Published: July 30, 2023

$1 Billion in Sales for First Time Ever, Record Contributions to Beneficiaries Mark Historic End to 40th Anniversary Year for Washington’s Lottery

Powerball jackpot winner, debit card rollout, fun winner stories all milestones in amazing year

Olympia, Wash. (July 12, 2023) – It’s usually lottery players who get to celebrate big dollar wins, but today the staff at Washington’s Lottery had two of their own big money achievements to commemorate on behalf of the state and those who benefit from lottery proceeds:

  • For the first time ever, Washington’s Lottery has surpassed $1 billion in annual sales, and,
  • With that record sales number, Washington’s Lottery will also set another record for the most money contributed to its beneficiaries during a single year, when its disbursements go out later this year. The Lottery’s primary beneficiary is the Washington Opportunity Pathways Account, which funds early childhood education, college grants, and other vital education programs across the state.

“We’ve been celebrating our 40th anniversary all year long, but this is definitely icing on the cake,” said Joshua Johnston, acting director of Washington’s Lottery. “Our mission is simple: generate sales that grow contributions to our beneficiaries, so being able to hit records on both fronts is truly incredible. This means more money for college scholarships, more for early childhood education, more for economic development, more to combat problem gambling and more for other important state projects. It’s really fulfilling for all of us here at Washington’s Lottery to know that we had a hand in helping make those things happen.”

The billion-dollar mark was not a foregone conclusion by any means. Washington’s Lottery hit that milestone with just 30 hours to go in the state’s fiscal year, which ended June 30, 2023.

While exact numbers for the historic beneficiary contributions and sales won’t be released until they’re audited, the previous sales record was $953.4 million, set in 2021, and the contributions record was $229 million, also set in 2021.

Other notable milestones, achievements and stories that happened during the Lottery’s 40th anniversary year include:

“It’s been a terrific year for Washington’s Lottery and our beneficiaries,” added Johnston. “Everyone here is really proud and motivated to see what we can do in the year to come.”

Making a Difference in Washington State
Since 1982, Washington’s Lottery has generated more than $4.5 billion to support several important state programs, including providing much-needed funds for the Washington Opportunity Pathways Account (WOPA). In FY21, WOPA received $185.7 million from the Lottery, enough to pay college tuition for more than 18,000 Washington residents. It also provided approximately 25% of the annual budget for the state’s Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program, which provides critical services to more than 15,000 children at 440 locations across Washington.

Washington’s Lottery Beneficiary Fact – April 2022
Washington’s Lottery is very proud to be a financial supporter of the state’s Early Childhood Education & Assistance Program (ECEAP). The $40 million annual investment the lottery makes in ECEAP has lasting effects. Children who participate in ECEAP are more likely to be kindergarten-ready than non-participants, and those who participate five or more hours per day are especially prepared in reading and math.* Children in state-funded pre-K programs like ECEAP see long-lasting positive effects, including increased grade progression, high school graduation and college enrollment.**

About Washington’s Lottery: The state’s Lottery offers consumers several types of games, including Mega Millions, Powerball, Lotto, Hit 5, Match 4, Pick 3, Daily Keno and Scratch. For more information, visit or find us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram at @walottery.

Keep it fun. Know your limit. Washington’s Lottery is an advocate for responsible gaming and collaborates with the Evergreen Council for Problem Gambling to provide resources for those in need. More information is available at


Press Contacts
Dan Miller (Curator on behalf of Washington’s Lottery)
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Xiamara Garza (Curator on behalf of Washington’s Lottery)
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* Early Learning Feedback Report.

** Boston Public Schools Department of Early Childhood. (n.d.). Boston universal pre-K. Retrieved June 9, 2021, from

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