VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (July 11, 2018) — Virginia Beach City Manager Dave Hansen announced today the appointment of Cynthia Whitbred-Spanoulis as director of the Department of Aquarium and Historic Houses. Whitbred-Spanoulis has served as interim director since September 2017.
“Cynthia is an experienced manager who has demonstrated the skills and talents we need to advance the long-term strategic goals for the Aquarium and our historic houses,” said Hansen. “Having seen her serve in the interim role for the last nine months, I am confident she will continue to grow into the senior leadership position of this critically important department and believe she will admirably serve as the executive director for both the Aquarium and Historic Homes foundations.”
Whitbred-Spanoulis has been with the City of Virginia Beach since 1996 and since 2012, had served as deputy director of the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center and City of Virginia Beach History Museums before being appointed interim director. Prior to working for the Aquarium, Whitbred-Spanoulis was the strategy and performance coordinator for the City of Virginia Beach’s Department of Economic Development. In that role, she was responsible for the coordination, marketing, media advertising, public relations, budgeting, and special projects within the department.
“The opportunity to lead the Department of Aquarium and Historic Houses into our next chapter is deeply humbling and incredibly exhilarating,” said Whitbred-Spanoulis. “As we continue our growth, I will remain steadfastly focused on our missions: inspiring conservation of the marine environment and promoting and preserving our unique history for all generations.”
Whitbred-Spanoulis graduated from Virginia Tech with a B.A. in Political Science and Urban Affairs/Planning. She also holds a Master of Public Administration from Virginia Tech and is a graduate of the Real Estate and Retail Development School from the University of Pennsylvania. Certified in negotiations by Harvard University, she also holds the designation of Accreditation in Public Relations.
In 2004, Whitbred-Spanoulis was the recipient of the City of Virginia Beach Employee of the Year, and in 2007, was recognized by Inside Business as a “Top 40 Under 40” recipient. In 2012, the Virginia Beach Rotary recognized her as the City of Virginia Beach Outstanding City Employee of the Year.