RALEIGH, N.C. -- Earline Middleton recently celebrated 30 years of service at the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina. 

She’s a vice president now, something she never dreamed possible when she started down this path.

“I didn’t even know what a food bank was back then," Middleton said. "We were a group of six. I got the job and we kind of went along as we went along.” 

Now she serves as the VP of Partner Services and Public Policy. 

She has overseen countless food drives and initiated several programs to address hunger in our region. 

“When I first met her, I could tell she was dedicated to the food bank and is just very passionate about the people we are serving, especially seniors and children,” Director of Partner Services Larry Morris said.

“She is best at putting the people we serve first and thinking about how we can best serve them and how we can help our partner agencies best serve them," said Marketing and Project Manager at the Food Bank of CENC Jennifer Caslin. "She is the first one to get up and help when a food drive comes in or when someone needs emergency food for when we need to go out and do a distribution."

While Middleton serves as a constant inspiration and dependable mentor, she says this work actually blesses her instead.

“I’ve seen a lot of different ways of how we look at hunger, talk about hunger, different ways of solving hunger, so it has been my joy working here,” Middleton reflected.