Faith and Hunger - About our Sponsors

Faith and Global Hunger:

A Special Day1 Series in Support of the UN Millennium Development Goals


Charlie Browning and Margaret Knoerr are retired in Chapel Hill, NC.  They bring long records of faith and service to their decision to underwrite the forthcoming "Faith and Global Hunger: A Special Day1 Series in Support of the UN Millennium Development Goals" project.

Charlie Browning (b. 1927) grew up on a family farm in Culpeper, VA.  He attended local public schools, and after attending Woodberry Forest Preparatory School, joined the Navy in 1945 and served in World War II's closing days.  In 1950 he received a B.S.-Agriculture from Virginia Tech, and then did graduate work at UNC-Chapel Hill until 1952.  Across the following three decades, Charlie gradually transformed the family dairy farm into a diversified producer of beef and hay, corn, and other crops.  From that vantage, Charlie watched the beginnings of the New South emerge, ever so haltingly, from Jim Crow.  In Culpeper, he served as vestryman at the local Episcopal Church, and was involved in local theater.  He married in 1958 and has two grown children, Martha and William.

Retiring in 1987, Charlie moved to Chapel Hill.  At Chapel of the Cross, he has been active in Bible class and has served as lay leader of the Parish Visitors.  He was founder and president of the Canterbury Foundation, which supported humanitarian causes, including efforts to fight global poverty and its direct consequence, hunger.

In 2000, Charlie married fellow Chapel of the Cross parishioner Margaret Knoerr.


Margaret Knoerr (b. 1924) grew up in a small town outside of Pittsburgh, PA.  As a twelve year-old, she exhibited a natural affinity for politics and current events, imagining herself among the waving flags and political power brokers as she followed radio coverage of the 1936 national political conventions.  In 1940, presidential candidate Wendell Willkie won her heart with his "One World" concept, and Margaret thereafter argued the cause of the nascent United Nations with special vigor in high school debate.  In 1942, with an older brother flying missions over Germany, she moved north immediately upon graduating high school and enlisted in the Canadian Women's Army Corps, which welcomed eighteen year-old recruits.  After the war she married, and moved to Chapel Hill in 1947.  Her Library Science MA thesis concerned the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and bibliographic control.  A career woman and working mother, Margaret served Duke University as an academic librarian while raising four children.  She has maintained an abiding interest in political debate and social justice causes.

Charlie and Margaret maintain strong commitments to church, service, and social justice.  They share a love of time with friends and family, foreign travel, gardening, and bird watching.