Park Authority

CONTACT INFORMATION: Open during regular business hours 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday - Friday
703-324-8700 TTY 711
12055 Government Center Pkwy.
Fairfax, Virginia 22035
Jai Cole
Executive Director

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Park Board: Dr. Cynthia Jacobs Carter

Dr. Cynthia Jacobs Carter, Park Auhority BoardFranconia

Dr. Cynthia Jacobs Carter was appointed to the Park Authority Board in 2016 representing the Franconia District. She was elected secretary of the board by a vote of her colleagues in 2023. Dr. Carter also serves as chair of the Park Authority Board Awards Committee and as liaison to the Park Foundation.

Dr. Cynthia Jacobs Carter is Senior Advancement Officer at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. She leads the Museum’s Gift Planning efforts. These efforts include heading the Harriet Tubman Legacy Society and helping to build an endowment for the newest Smithsonian museum. The popular museum, which opened in 2016, is located on the National Mall. She is also a member of the Diversity and Inclusion committee.

Before joining the museum’s staff, Dr. Carter served at the Smithsonian as Chief Development Officer in the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. Prior to that, she was Chief Development/External Affairs Officer at Africare. Other positions were held at Howard University, and at The George Washington University. Dr. Carter has taught at Georgetown University and at The George Washington University, both in Africana Women's Studies. She is a National Geographic author of three books: Africana Woman: Her Story Through Time (Simon and Schuster); Freedom In My Heart: Voices From the United States National Slavery Museum (Penguin Random House), which was nominated for the NAACP Image Awards for Best Literary work in 2010; and I Am, I Can, I Will: A Guided Journal of Self-Discovery for Black Girls (Workman).

Dr. Carter earned a Doctor of Education degree in Educational Leadership and a Master of Arts degree in International Education from The George Washington University. Her undergraduate degree is from Virginia State University.

Carter's term ends December 2027.

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