First winner announced in California’s ‘Vax for the Win’ program


(KTXL) — One of the first winners of California’s multimillion-dollar vaccine incentive program, “Vax for the Win,” was announced Wednesday.

In a video shared on Twitter, the governor’s office introduced a man named Tony who says he learned Friday he was one of 15 vaccinated Californians who won $50,000 during last week’s drawing.

“I’m so grateful,” Tony says with a chuckle. “I’m still in disbelief a little bit.”

Tony was randomly picked out of 21.5 million Californians who had received at least COVID-19 vaccine dose prior to the first drawing.

The next drawing will be held Friday, June 11, when 15 more people will be randomly picked. On the day the state will fully reopen, June 15, 10 grand prize winners will get $1.5 million each, bring the total prize money to $16.5 million.

Two million $50 gift cards will also be distributed to those getting vaccinated.

“It’s been a rough year, year and a half for me and for everybody else out there,” Tony says in the video. “So it’s nice to have this extra money come in. I had basically lived off my savings for the past year and a half.”

By Friday, 45% of Californians were fully vaccinated.

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