Connie Margaret Coca
2022 Corn Mother Honoree
Connie Coca, M.S.W. was born in Las Vegas, New Mexico in 1943. She is the oldest of 13 children. She grew up caring for her 12 siblings and her grandmother, Silveria Blea Martinez. Silveria taught Connie to appreciate her New Mexican traditions, such as recipes, folklore, and celebrations. Connie’s mother, Isabel Martinez Benavidez, who when Connie was born was a single mother of three and a teacher, instilled in Connie strength, resourcefulness, and a love for teaching.
Both her mother and grandmother influenced Connie, leading her to a career in Social Work and community organization, including working as a caregiver in Laramie, Wyoming. She has dedicated her life to promoting Latina/o culture in Southern Wyoming, founding a bilingual radio station, and encouraging documentation of Latina/o History, including the creation of a mural depicting Latina/o history in Wyoming. Her desire to promote awareness of Latina/o culture has led to her publishing two articles, and teaching at the University of Wyoming and Laramie County Community College.
“Always be a preserver of hope.”
– Rita Moreno,
Alma Awards, 1998
Connie is on Pages 27-30
Copyright Return of the Corn Mothers © 2016-2022