Powerball First Millionaire of 2022 is Brian Mineweaser of PA

A Pennsylvania man has started the New Year with a $1 million lottery prize. Brian Mineweaser was announced as the winner of the Powerball First Millionaire of the Year competition during the live Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest TV broadcast.

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Mineweaser, from Honey Brook in Chester County, Pennsylvania, was one of five finalists with a shot at becoming an instant millionaire. Shortly after midnight on January 1, his number was randomly drawn by the lottery machine.

"Congratulations number 4!" Powerball correspondent Jessie James Decker announced after Mineweaser's number was chosen. "It's Brian from Pennsylvania," Seacrest confirmed.

Mineweaser and his wife Dorothy, who were watching the draw from home, were shocked to learn they were instantly seven figures better off. The couple were all smiles but temporarily speechless after hearing they'd won. 

Before the draw, Mineweaser called the chance of taking home the top prize "surreal" and "amazing."  "I’m extremely nervous to appear on national TV, but I’m excited," he said. "I’m sure it is going to be a very exciting night.” 

Brian and Dorothy will use the money to send their four children to college. 

This is the promotion's third consecutive year crowning a newly-minted Powerball millionaire shortly after the ball drops on New Year's Eve. 

"The Powerball game produces hundreds of million-dollar winners every year, but to capture one person's winning moment as it unfolds on live television at the top of a new year is something spectacular," said May Scheve Reardon, Powerball Product Group Chair. 

She also confirmed that you'll get another chance at becoming an overnight millionaire in 2023, announcing that "Powerball and its lottery partners are excited to come back next year to continue this winning tradition." 

29 US lotteries participated in this year's contest: Arizona, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana (Hoosier), Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virgin Islands, Vermont, and Washington D.C.

Local drawings were held to determine a group of national semifinalists, and five finalists were then randomly chosen from that pool for the chance to win $1 million. 

The other finalists in the running to score the top prize were Linda Perkins of Aurora, IL; Shari Beenken of Titonka, IA; Robert Long of Waterloo, IA (representing a 22-player group, Lotto 22); and Aaron Rose of Slaughter, LA.

Each finalist received a $10,000 cash prize and a New Year's Eve party package to use at home, including an LED TV, karaoke system, laptop computer, dinner for eight, and a $500 Party City voucher.

Mineweaser is the promotion's third millionaire. Carlos Mabry of Washington, D.C. hit the top prize in 2021, and in 2020 the big winner was Blaine Marston of Passadumkeag, Maine.

Published: Saturday, January 1, 2022
Updated: Saturday, January 1, 2022