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Lucky Leo lands lottery job – QNS.com

Lucky Leo lands lottery job

Forest Hills native Makita Bond, the latest addition to the on-air staff of the New York State Lottery, numbers herself one lucky lady. She’s one of three winners of the Lottery’s first-ever “virtual talent search” and she didn’t even apply.
“My aunt sent in my photo and resume - I didn’t even know about it,” the 23-year-old Queensborough Community College graduate with a degree in Secondary Education exclaimed.
The online talent search yielded more than 1,000 applications from as far away as Michigan from March 3 (3-03) to the deadline of March 28 (3-28). Lottery officials contacted just over 100 of them for a first interview. Bond was one of about 50 invited to actually audition, at the Lottery offices in Schenectady.
“It was very shocking. I didn’t tell any of my friends about the audition because I didn’t want to jinx it,” she confessed. “I’m a typical Leo [7-23 to 8-22] and am really enthusiastic,” she said.
After an extensive background check and a second audition, she was one of three applicants selected to announce the lucky digits in the “Win Four” and “Daily Numbers” games, and made her first appearance on broadcast TV on Tuesday, July 1 (7-01) at 12:27 p.m.
Her strong camera presence was instrumental in getting her the position, according to Scott Trzaskos a spokesperson for the Lottery.
When Bond observed that the other two winners, Gretchen Dizer of Buffalo and Jina Matthews from Baltimore, MD, debuted first, he quipped, “We saved the best for last.”
Bond, a Forest Hills High School alumnus, confessed that she had “Plan A, B and C” for her life. “I really wanted to be an actress - teaching was Plan B,” she admitted.
Like many aspiring thespians, she found herself working as a bartender and waitperson - at the Red Lobster near Times Square in Manhattan.
“The truth is that as time went on, I realized that I was starting to not like kids,” she confessed, mentioning that Plan C was - surprisingly - to be a homicide detective.
“What’s great about my new job is that I’m supporting education from afar,” she explained. Last year, according to official figures, the Lottery contributed nearly $2.60 billion to help support education on $7.549 billion in revenues.
Bond has moved to Schenectady, where she found an apartment close to work, in a nice neighborhood that reminds her of Forest Hills. “It’s a lot quieter up here,” she observed, “but there’s an Italian place nearby that’s almost as good as the ones on Austin Street.”

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