Founder of hospitality industry monthly dies

April 1, 2009

Mary Margaret Traxler, 57, died March 25 at Presbytyerian Hospital. Founder and publisher of the Greater Charlotte Hospitality News, she was an unstinting supporter of the Community Culinary School of Charlotte.

To read her obituary in the Charlotte Observer, click here.

To donate to the Cummunity Culinary School of Charlotte in Mary Margaret Traxler, please mark your check "Mary Margaret Traxler Education Fund" and send it to the Community Culinary School of Charlotte, 2401-A Distribution St., Charlotte, NC 28203.

The text of Mary Margaret Traxler's obituary follows:


Mary Margaret Traxler

Mrs. Traxler, 57, of Charlotte, a respected fixture in the area's hospitality industry for nearly two decades, passed away March 25, 2009 at Presbyterian Hospital.

Mary Margaret came to Charlotte from New Orleans in 1990, when she launched TRIP Magazine, a monthly guide to what to see and do in Charlotte. In 2001, she began Greater Charlotte Hospitality News, a monthly trade publication affiliated with nine local industry groups.
Mary Margaret did more than cover the local hospitality industry. She was also an integral part of it. She was an outgoing people person who exuded an infectious joie de vivre, and there were few industry parties or events that she didn't attend. Her energy was seemingly endless, and it often wasn't easy for friends and colleagues to keep up with her peripatetic pace.

Yet she always had time to listen to friends with a sympathetic ear and was a master at cheering people up. She knew how to have fun, and she shared that trait generously with those around her. No one could talk about Mary Margaret without smiling. Even lung cancer couldn't dim her upbeat attitude, and she often wrote about her struggle in her publisher's letter in Hospitality News.

Her caring nature was also demonstrated by her commitment to the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority Educational Foundation, of which she was president. She helped strengthen the foundation by donating proceeds from the Visitors' Choice Gold Awards, an event sponsored by TRIP Magazine for five years, to the organization.

With TRIP Magazine, Mary Margaret was a visionary on the cusp of Charlotte's burgeoning tourism business. She further nurtured its growth with Hospitality News, which served the industry with timely and in-depth news not covered elsewhere. She recently sold TRIP to Morris Visitor Publications.

She was a founder of the Greater Charlotte Hospitality & Tourism Alliance, often working in the background as a galvanizing force. The group honored her in January 2008 with its highest award, Hospitality Person of the Year.

Born in Houston on December 20, 1951, Mary Margaret grew up in Baytown, TX. In 1974, she graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. from Sophie Newcomb College of Tulane University, where she was valedictorian and Phi Beta Kappa. She earned her Master's from the University of Texas at Austin 1977 and taught special education in New Orleans before relocating to Charlotte.

She is survived by her son, Phillip Broome, and grandson, Gavin Broome, both of Charlotte; and her sister, Cris Traxler of Sausalito, CA.
A memorial service to celebrate Mary Margaret's life will be held Tuesday, March 31, 4:30 p.m., at the Palmer Building, 2601 East Seventh St.

Two educational funds have been established in Mary Margaret's memory. To contribute to the Mary Margaret Traxler Education Fund at the Community Culinary School of Charlotte, checks should be sent to the school at 2401 Distribution St., # A, Charlotte 28203, with a notation specifying the fund on the check.

To donate to the Mary Margaret Traxler Scholarship Fund for culinary and hospitality students at Central Piedmont Community College, checks should be made out to the CPCC Foundation, Inc. and mailed to P.O. Box 35009, Charlotte 28235. The name of the fund should be included on the check.



Community Culinary School of Charlotte
2401-A Distribution St. Charlotte, NC 28203 Phone: 704-375-4500  Fax: 704-347-0258
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