Her father, Ralph DeMarco, was also district leader from 1966 to 1977. He served as deputy commissioner of the Department of Sanitation and executive member of the Taminent Regular Democratic Club for 44 years.
Among his achievements is improving the East River waterfront for the residents of Astoria. Today, the park along the shore is named after him.
“I walk past my father’s plaque every night and say hello to him as I do my walk along Shore Boulevard,” Scarano said.
Scarano was elected to the unpaid position in 2011, succeeding her sister Gloria DeMarco Aloise.
“We carry on the legacy of my father, who was so instrumental in doing everything for this community,” she said.
The main job of a district leader is to “help the people of the community” on issues like housing, jobs, sanitation and transportation, she said. Scarano said affordable housing for seniors is one of the biggest concerns in Astoria.
“Our seniors should be able to stay here,” she said.
Scarano has also seen Astoria change over the years, particularly the influx of young people. She urged them to get involved in the community, such as joining the Taminent Democratic Club.
“You need a blend of the old and the young,” she said. “They should know what’s going on in their community, what they community needs, how they can help and volunteer.”
She hopes that Astoria is able to preserve the character of the neighborhood, all while protecting seniors and welcoming new residents.
“We don’t want to turn into Manhattan,” Scarano said. “We want to keep the beauty of Astoria.”