Mariano Diaz is an alumni of Lehman College who graduated Cum Laude with a B.A. in Romance Languages in 1978. He was later accepted to the Master’s program at George Washington University to study International Relations.
That same year he had to make a difficult, yet challenging decision—whether to meet his uncle’s request to become a partner in a supermarket venture. The decision he made was pivotal for Mariano in that this kicked-off his illustrious entrepreneurial career. While co-managing a supermarket as a budding entrepreneur, and after growing his first business partnership from 1978 to 1983, Mariano made another bold move in 1988—to develop and build his own enterprise: a C-Town Supermarket in Harlem, New York. Harlem at that time was going through a community transition of which Mariano was a part of from an economic development and growth perspective.
Now, with more than 30 years of experience, Mariano has become an industry leader in relation to the acquisition and development of numerous supermarket / commercial properties that have proven to be successful in New York City, New Jersey and Florida. Although all his ventures demonstrated economic impact and viability in traditional urban communities, Mariano’s entrepreneurial zeal has also helped his employees in more ways than providing a job. He has served as a mentor and advisor for some of his employees to launch other careers and enterprises of their own.
Mariano’s most impressive outcomes is in his trajectory of work and commitment to his employees, charities and educational causes he continues to support in local communities and in his birthplace, the Dominican Republic. Mariano, a champion in the Latino owned supermarket industry has been recognized by the Catholic Institute of the Food Industry, the Boys Scouts of East Harlem and numerous community based organizations. Mariano Diaz, the activist, philanthropist and humanitarian proudly serves as a life-long Executive Board member and past President of the National Supermarket Association. He has also served on the board of the Food Industry Alliance.
Adding to Mariano’s distinct career and love for the arts, culture and Romance languages is his fluency in English, Spanish, French, Portuguese and Italian.