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TREASURE COAST -- The University of Florida's Treasure Coast Gator Club will hold the sixth annual Treasure Coast Gator Toast on May 8, at 5:30 p.m., at the Moorings Club in Vero Beach.
This year's event will prove to be another exciting evening to celebrate the Gator Nation, featuring scholarship awards to local students and UF Athletic Director, Jeremy Foley as keynote speaker.
Mr. Foley has handled virtually every aspect of UF's $96 million athletic program during his administrative career, rising from a ticket intern in 1976, and now, in his 21st year as athletic director. He is widely recognized for moving UF Athletics into the upper echelon of college sports, but is also known for being equally committed to student-athlete success in the classroom, said Anthony Guettler, Treasure Coast Gator Club president.
"This is going to be an evening to remember," Mr. Guettler said. "Not only is Jeremy Foley a great role model for our scholarship recipients, but he will give us an incredible perspective on the condition and future of UF sports. Everyone is excited and honored to welcome Mr. Foley to the Treasure Coast."
In addition to Foley's keynote address, the Club will present more than $25,000 in scholarships to 18 students from Indian River and St. Lucie County who will attend UF in Gainesville or the UF Indian River Research and Education Center in Fort Pierce in the fall. The evening will also include a sit-down dinner, one-of-a-kind silent auction items and vendors selling unique Gator gear.
The Treasure Coast Gator Toast, is the signature event of the Treasure Coast Gator Club, which has awarded over $100,000 in scholarships to local UF students since 2007. Mr. Guettler said the Club's scholarship program is different from others because it is open to all students from Indian River or St. Lucie County who are pursuing an undergraduate degree from UF, not just graduating high school seniors.
"With our program, we want to make sure that great students, who need a little help to complete their education, have the support they need," Mr. Guettler said. "Our scholarships are very helpful for older students pursuing a bachelor's degree, who have more limited options for applying for scholarship support."
The Gator Toast is the major fundraising event for the scholarship program.
Other sources of funding are named scholarships which this year include the Arthur and Marian Block Endowment Fund, the Bryan Schirard Memorial Fund, the Elizabeth F. Addison Memorial Scholarship, the Clint S. Malone Memorial Scholarship, the Mark and Robbie Pierce for the Hardee Family Foundation Scholarship, and a scholarship in honor of Ray and Beth Smith given by Trey Smith. The Club also hosts a variety of fundraising events throughout the year.
The Treasure Coast Gator Club is a 501(c)3 organization governed by a local board of directors that celebrates UF and provides networking opportunities for local alumni and UF fans alike. The Club's core mission is to raise money to provide scholarships for Indian River and St. Lucie County students.
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Tickets are on sale at www.tcgatorclub.com at a charge of $55 for UF Alumni Association members, $65 for nonmembers or $25 for children 12 and under.