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Interview With $1,000,000 PCH Winner Jane Goodwin!

It’s always a pleasure to speak with any recent PCH winner, but Jane Goodwin certainly takes the cake. I mean with a last name like that, how can she not end up in the PCH Winner hall of fame already?

Jane won $1,000,000 on August 31st, so we caught up with her a few weeks after her winning moment, after the dust settled so to speak.  She says she’s doing great and she has “all her eggs in a row.” She figured out where her money is going to be deposited, and all of the paperwork for the end of the year has been filed. But even with all of that taken care of, she hasn’t had much time to really think about what to actually do with the money, as she has spent most of her free time taking care of her mother-in-law.

We asked her what she’d be doing with her time otherwise, and Jane says she loves to garden! But since her mother-in-law entered rehab, her garden has “gone to wreck and ruin!”  As you can see, Jane Goodwin has a good sense of humor, which explains why she thought that her being a PCH winner must’ve been some sort of joke!

When the Prize Patrol showed up to Jane’s house, it turned out she wasn’t home. She had left for the day with a friend on a shopping trip. But her house wasn’t entirely empty! Jane’s husband did see Dave, Danielle and Howie show up across the street with balloons, flowers and the big check. He wasn’t sure who they were, so he thought they must’ve been helping to throw a surprise party for his neighbor!  He was about to leave the house when the Prize Patrol stopped his car and he gave them the full story. Jane was actually on a boat cruise to Provincetown, MA for a day of shopping, but would be back by 6pm. He agreed to help them, and promised he wouldn’t ruin the surprise! He called her to let her know there was a “package” at the door. He didn’t call anyone else. And he figured that if he told anyone, someone might slip and send her a text and accidentally tell her that she was a PCH winner!


Eventually the Prize Patrol made their way down to the dock to wait for her ship to come in (couldn’t resist the pun)! Once they were sighted, it caused quite the commotion, which eventually made its way to everyone inside the boat!

Jane tells me: “They made the announcement over the loud speaker as we docked, asking if anyone on the boat played Publishers Clearing House. I thought they were just playing a game with us! I was chatting with my friend and I explained to her that I do. She asked why I entered and I said, ‘well if someone’s got to win, it might as well be me!’”

As you can see from the video above, eventually everyone on the ship filed off of the gangway, and the Prize Patrol was craning their necks to see if they could recognize Jane. Jane gives us her perspective:

“When we got off, I recognized Dave Sayer. My friend kept saying. ‘You won! You won!’ And obviously someone did, but I didn’t think it was me. Then he said my name. It was quite a shock! Quite a surprise!”

Since time has passed since she became a PCH winner, I asked her if she could remember what was the first thing that went through her head after she had won. What was the first thing she thought about spending the money on?

“The first thing that went through my head was nothing! I’m kind of a planner. I don’t like spending money. If we need something, I will buy it, but I’m not really a spontaneous person. I like to plan and see what is really best for us. I’m trying to look at this as a nice nest egg on top of our retirement.”

But maybe Jane sees traveling on the sea as some form of good luck, because she did eventually admit that she and her husband might end up going on an Alaskan cruise or a return visit to Hawaii!

Before we wrapped up, I asked her where she displays her winning check:

“It’s right as you walk in my back door! You can’t miss it! It’s on display! That’s for the doubting Thomases. I’ve been entering Publishers Clearing House for 47 years and I’m still playing. Lightning can strike twice!”

I also couldn’t resist ending our conversation with one last joke:

Me: “You know it’s funny, your last name is Goodwin, but you really had the BEST win of all!”

She paused a moment and responded, “I should hang up right now, that was the WORST joke!”  We both had a good laugh, but I still think I’m right!

Matt K.
PCH Creative


P.S. – Jane inadvertently caused quite a scene when the Prize Patrol showed up at the pier! If the Prize Patrol were going to surprise you someplace other than your home, where would it be? Tell us in the comments below!

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