Maria Marleny Daza de Salcedo was born in the city of Bucaramanga, Colombia, June 18, 1934. Her family moved to the capital city of Bogota when she was a little girl. There she grew up, went to school and completed her education in Business Secretarial major. Marleny early in her professional career began working as a secretary in Colombia’s National Congress. In Bogota she met and fell in love with her future husband Juan J. Salcedo. Together they had four daughters, Liliana, Diana, Daisy and Marlene.
In the early 1970’s Marleny moved with her family to New York City and settled in the Colombian neighborhood of Corona in the borough of Queens. In Corona, with her husband Juan, they purchased a home where they continue to raise their four daughters. Marleny did not just become a homemaker but also an active member of the Colombian exile community of Queens.
Marleny, her husband Juan and a group of concerned Colombians in Queens founded the Colombian Civic Center, CCC, to advocate for issues concerning the Colombian community in Queens and to promote a positive image of Colombia in New York City. With her effort and hard work as recording secretary, Marleny made of the CCC the leading organization of Colombians in New York City. City Mayors, Borough Presidents, city Council Members and elected politicians in Washington, DC all came to the CCC to earn the support of the large Colombian community.
Marleny and the other leaders of the CCC also extended their presence with the political leadership of Colombia. Colombian presidents, consuls and other government officials when visiting NYC would meet with the leaders of the CCC. Marleny worked tirelessly to have the CCC work closely with the Colombian National Beauty Pageant to bring Miss Colombia to New York City as part of the CCC annual festival celebrating Colombia’s Independence Day. Marleny once served as President of the coordinating committee of the CCC Independence Day Festival. This yearly celebration of Colombian culture would attract tens of thousands of visitors at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens. Marleny was a member and worked for the East Elmhurst Colombia Lions Club.
After retiring from her community activities in Queens, Marleny and Juan moved to Matthews, NC to be close to their daughters, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Marleny is survived by her daughters Liliana Garzon, Diana Reyes, Daisy Bedoya and Marlene Quinones, her sister Laida Aguirre, 12 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren.