Charlotte Stengel

Charlotte Stengel is beloved by all at the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York, and in her community of Cairo, NY where she has been working to feed the poor and hungry since 1947. Charlotte is 88 years old, and has been a tireless advocate and servant to her community for over 60 years, starting with a food pantry in her home and in later years it was moved to Resurrection Lutheran Church to meet the growing need. Charlotte has had an amazing life, growing up in a circus family in Germany, pre-World War II. She won a gold medal in weightlifting in the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. When the War started, Charlotte’s family was pressed into service entertaining German troops on the Russian front. During the war, her mother was wounded. Charlotte carried her mother through the woods for four days until they reached safety, eventually ending up in Poland. After the War, while performing for American troops, Charlotte met her husband, George, and in 1947 they came to America and Charlotte started her food pantry. Today, Charlotte serves 3,000 people each year out of her food pantry. Charlotte has touched many more thousands of lives over her 60 years, and is truly deserving of being recognized as a "Hunger All-Star".  Charlotte was recognized in the national Elks Club magazine in May of 1999 as a Citizen of the Year.  ". Cairo-Durham, NY, Lodge named Charlotte Stengel as its citizen of the year recently. Since 1947 Stengel has been actively involved in providing for the less fortunate of the community, and in recent years she has helped the Cairo Food Pantry. The Lodge held a dinner in Stengel’s honor to thank her for her dedication and also donated $1,000 to the food pantry for which she works.