Marlen Garcia was elected as a member of the Baldwin Park City Council in November 1999. She possesses the honorable distinction of being the first Latina elected to the Baldwin Park City Council, initially fulfilling an unexpired term followed by successful re-elections in 2001 and 2005. In 2005, Marlen was selected as the 57th Assembly District Woman of the Year for her outstanding contributions to the community she serves. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Independent Cities Association and is the City of Baldwin Park's representative to the Foothill Transit Governing Board. She was elected to serve on the Los Angeles County Library Commission from 2003 to 2004, honorably served as the Chairperson of the Mount San Antonio College Bond Oversight Committee from 2004 to 2007 and is the Past-Chairperson of the East Valley Community Health Center. Marlen is also a Notary Public for the State of California, appointed to this Commission in June 1996.
Prior to being elected to the Baldwin Park City Council, Marlen served as Chairperson of the Recreation and Community Services Commission, in addition to Chairperson of the Joint Recreation and Community Services & Housing Commissions. It was during her role as Chairperson of the Recreation and Community Services Commission that Marlen initiated and spearheaded the building of a Teen Center in Baldwin Park. The Teen Center was completed and opened in November 2003 as a healthy teen center, offering healthy snack alternatives to the youth of Baldwin Park. To further strengthen her efforts in addressing the national epidemic of childhood obesity, Marlen advocated and succeeded in securing support for the creation of the city of Baldwin Park's People on the Move Collaborative; a collaboration between the BPUSD, Los Angeles County Health Department, the City of Baldwin Park, the California Center for Public Health Advocacy, Kaiser Permanente and other community partners. Other healthy policies introduced by Councilwoman Garcia include the smoking ban at all public parks, city facilities and certain outdoor public areas in the City of Baldwin Park. She advocated and successfully implemented the Baldwin Park PRIDE Platoon Program, a program specifically designed to deal with "at-risk" youth, utilizing proactive and innovative techniques for positive redirection.
As a Manager at Kaiser Permanente, Baldwin Park Medical Center, Marlen has achieved 25 years of service to the organization and was selected by Kaiser Permanente to be the recipient of the 1999 and 2001 YWCA Woman of Achievement for her outstanding contributions to Kaiser Permanente and the communities they serve. She has served as the Regional Secretary and Treasurer of the Kaiser Permanente Latino Association (KPLA), and currently serves as the President of the KPLA Baldwin Park Medical Center Chapter. Her contributions to the community include coordinating the annual KPLA Family Health Fair, member of the Annual Jean M. Carpenter Scholarship Memorial Committee, Workplace Coordinator for the Kaiser Permanente Community Giving Campaign, member of the first San Gabriel Valley Chapter of the American Cancer Society Colorectal Cancer Awareness Walk, Coordinator of the Kaiser Permanente Baldwin Park Medical Center Adopt-A-School Program and Take-A-Daughter To Work Program.
Marlen's service to public education includes Chairperson of the Advisory School Site Council and Parent Advisory Committee at Foster Elementary School in Baldwin Park. She also served as Member of the Baldwin Park Unified School District Middle School Task Force.