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Nearly 12,000 turkeys distributed at Employee Appreciation event

Dec. 17, 2018, 5:00 PM

Thousands of Vanderbilt faculty and staff members dropped by Langford Auditorium Dec. 14 for the annual “Turkey Toss” Employee Appreciation event.

A longstanding Vanderbilt tradition, Turkey Toss is a way to thank university and Medical Center employees for their service by offering them their choice of a free turkey, a vegetarian tofurkey or a Vanderbilt apron.

Vice Chancellor for Communications Steve Ertel and Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos hand out turkey at the annual Employee Appreciation event. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)
Vice Chancellor for Communications Steve Ertel and Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos hand out turkey at the annual Employee Appreciation event. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)

Some 115 volunteers made this year’s event possible, including help distributing turkeys and other gifts from Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos, Vice Chancellor for Investments Anders Hall, Vice Chancellor for Communications Steve Ertel, School of Nursing Dean Linda Norman, Interim General Counsel Ruza Shellaway, General Counsel Chief of Staff Lizzie Shilliam, Vice Chancellor for Information technology John Lutz, Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion James Page Jr. and Vice Chancellor for Administration Eric Kopstain.

Cpl. Shaneithia Lewis and K-9 officer Jack, Santa and an elf at the 2019 Turkey Toss. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)
Cpl. Shaneithia Lewis and K-9 officer Jack, Santa and an elf at the 2019 Turkey Toss (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)

Other highlights from this year’s event included a visit from Santa, carolers in Victorian costume, festive holiday decorations and multiple selfie stations.

2018 Turkey Toss by the numbers

  • 11,808 turkeys—enough to fill five 18-wheel tractor trailers!
  • 312 tofurkeys
  • 3,200 Vanderbilt aprons

Turkey Toss is sponsored by Vanderbilt University Human Resources with assistance from the following partners: Vanderbilt Athletics, Health Plus, the Recreation and Wellness Center, Vanderbilt University Public Safety and the Vanderbilt University Police Department.

Learn more about Employee Appreciation at Vanderbilt.

One of several selfie stations at the 2018 Turkey Toss. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)
One of several selfie stations at the 2018 Turkey Toss. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)

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