Grad Breaks Guinness World Record for Holiday Toy Drive

Andrew Ladner is back at it again. The Full Sail Film grad and founder of the United States Veterans Corps already holds a Guinness World Record for Largest Food Drive, and now he’s doubled up on his efforts to help military families in need by breaking the record for Most Toys Collected in 24 Hours.

“The whole event is a three day process between the set-up, the drive, and tear down. And before that it’s nearly a year’s worth of planning and logistics,” says Andrew. “There’s a tendency to lie awake the night before and hope it’s not all for nothing. But regardless of whether we beat the record or not, we were focused on the most important thing which was getting the toys to families.”

He needn’t have worried. Andrew and his team beat the previous record by a long shot — raising 52,706 pounds of toys for low-income families and the children of deployed military personnel. That’s nearly 8,000 pounds more than the old record.

The event, which was called “Toys for Little Troops,” was sponsored by tech company Lenovo, who has U.S. headquarters in Morrisville, North Carolina. The drive was so successful that the USVC anticipates they’ll be able to provide toys to kids along the east coast long after the holidays are over. It also allowed Andrew to put his degree to work, by producing all of the promotional media leading up to the event.

“We made commercials to get the word out, and we also produced a time-lapse video to help in the documentation process for Guinness,” he says.

As to whether the USVC will go for more world records in the future, Andrew says he’s just happy to help out kids and families. It’s a legacy he’s working to pass on to his own children.

“I hope they realize what’s possible. When I was a kid, I didn’t think I’d ever achieve a Guinness World Record, let alone two. But if you plan and put in the time, you can do it. It’s the people who don’t even try who fail.”