Mr. Ketner is the Chairman Emeritus and Co-Founder of Food Lion, Inc., which was started in 1957 and today operates more than 1000 stores. He retired from Food Lion in April 1991 and is now an Adjunct Lecturer in Business at the Ralph W. Ketner School of Business at Catawba College.
In 1990, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award at his induction into The Institute of American Entrepreneurs Hall of Fame and became one of the first five Laureates inducted into the North Carolina Business Hall of Fame at its inception that year. He also received the Citation for Distinguished Citizenship from the North Carolina Citizens for Business and Industry in 1992, and has received numerous awards in the supermarket field.
He volunteered for the U.S. Army in 1942, at the height of the Second World War, and spent 35 months in Africa and Italy. After the War, he worked as an auditor, an IRS agent and an agent for the North Carolina Department of Revenue.
He is married to Anne Blizzard Ketner and they reside in North Carolina. His son Robert is a Vice President with Merrill Lynch and his daughter Linda owns a consulting firm.