Florida Lottery Winner Invests In Reviving Black Neighborhood

by Olivia Butler

December 7, 2017

Photo: J. Albert Diaz/ALM

On April 19, 2010, the Florida Lottery announced Miguel Pilgram, 40, of North Bay Village, claimed the April 17, $52 million Florida Lotto jackpot.

After taxes Mr. Pilgram was able to claim a lump-sum payment of $29.24 million.


Now, while we love to see a brother on the come up… The story gets much better.

After winning the lottery Pilgram used his winnings to launch his own real estate company, The Pilgram Group. He is now investing in properties across South Florida with the goal of reviving Sistrunk Boulevard, a notorious corridor once known as a thriving Main Street for African Americans.

According to Black Enterprise Sistrunk boulevard is the “historical heartbeat of Fort Lauderdale’s oldest black community.” It runs through the city’s black business district and was named after James Sistrunk, a black physician who helped establish the first African American hospital in Broward County in 1938. During this time, segregation laws banned African Americans who lived west of the tracks from crossing over to the east side after dark.

After desegregation, Sistrunk Boulevard gradually declined into an area plagued by gun violence and riddled with drugs and abandoned buildings. To restore the distressed community to its original days of glory, Pilgram has purchased three buildings and plans to build a jazz lounge, blues lounge, restaurants, and a center for performing arts.

“For me, it’s [about] preserving the community as a whole,” Pilgram told an NBC local affiliate station in South Florida, adding that Sistrunk was once a hub of “success for businessmen.”

Great job Miguel! Your work is appreciated and we can’t wait to see how it all turns out!

TELL US: What would you do with your winnings if it was you who had won the $52 million dollar jackpot?

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