Employees of Moorestown, NJ-based Bayada Home Health Care have an extra reason to be thankful this holiday. "I'm taking $20 million, dividing it up and giving it to everybody," Mark Baiada, chairman and founder of the $1.4 billion private nursing company, announced at a staff holiday luncheon Tuesday in Philadelphia, per CBS Philadelphia. Baiada tells Yahoo News the money was doled out to 32,000 employees, including some recent retirees, based on years of service. New hires received $50, while some long-term workers received five figures. Pediatric nurse Nicole Green, who's worked at the company for three years, tells Yahoo her payout will go toward her daughter's college tuition. "Everyone was in awe," the 48-year-old says. "Mark totally surprised us."
"I wanted to show some gratitude to everybody for all the hard work you've done taking care of our clients," Baiada told the crowd at Philadelphia's Bellevue Hotel. "My wife Ann watches The Bachelor and said it was better than the most dramatic rose ceremony ever," the 71-year-old father of five jokes of his announcement, per Yahoo. The move comes ahead of Bayada's transition into a nonprofit early next year. "I don't really need the money, so we're going to turn [the company] over to a newly created nonprofit that's all mission-driven," Baiada previously told the Philadelphia Inquirer. Green expects to be around for the long haul. "He didn't have to do this," she says of Baiada. "I've only worked at Bayada a short time, but I'm a lifelong employee now." (In California, an example of "what Thanksgiving's about.")