USA Today: Few major lottery jockpot winners get chance to be anonymous
From USA Today (4/22/12): Note to the Kansas and Maryland winners of last month's $656 million lottery jackpot: Count your anonymous blessings.
The states, where ticket holders claimed their $218.6 million portions in anonymity, are two of only six states that allow lottery winners' names to remain secret.
Officials in states other than Kansas, Maryland, Delaware, Michigan, North Dakota and Ohio make public the names of lottery winners, with rare exceptions. Most see the identities of winners as a matter of public record subject to open-records law while others say revealing the names adds to the lottery's credibility and encourages others to play.
"People like to see the people who are actually winning," said Katy Smith, a spokeswoman from the Oklahoma Lottery. "If we don't let people know people are winning, then that raises questions."
Mike Lang, an Illinois Lottery spokesman, agrees and says winners in his state must come forward publicly "unless there is a compelling reason not to."