Dr. Cynthia Jacobs Carter is Chief Development Officer at The Smithsonian Institution’s Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. She leads the Center’s unrestricted fundraising efforts, which include events, campaign participation, planned giving, direct mail, social media fund raising, cause marketing, and the growing of the endowment. In addition, she raises funds, largely through sponsorships, for the annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival.
Prior to her work with the Smithsonian, Dr. Carter served as Chief Development and External Affairs Officer at the Washington, DC Headquarters of Africare. Prior to Africare, she was Director of Development at InterAction, and in the College of Arts and Sciences, the Graduate School, and the School of Medicine at Howard University in Washington, DC. She served as a Director in Institutional Advancement at The George Washington University. She has also served as adjunct professor at Georgetown University and The George Washington University, both in Africana Women's Studies. She is also National Geographic author of two books.
Dr. Carter also serves on of the Board of Trustees for the Kingstowne Residential Owners Corporation, where she has been an officer for nearly 15 years. She has served on the boards of the Delta Research and Education Foundation, the National MultiCultural Institute, and the Phi Beta Delta Honor Society, among others. Dr. Carter served on the Fairfax County Park Foundation Board of Directors for 5 years. In 2016, she was appointed as the Lee District representative to the Park Authority Board and is the liaison to the Park Foundation Board.
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.