Katie Cristol stepping down from Arlington Co. Board to lead Tysons development nonprofit

Katie Cristol, an Arlington County Board member and former chair, is stepping down this summer to lead the Tysons Community Alliance.

Cristol made the announcement Tuesday that she is leaving the board in July to take over as the  Tysons Community Alliance’s first permanent chief executive officer.

“I’ll continue to serve you all on the County Board through July 4th of this year,” Cristol wrote in a letter posted to Twitter. “Even after the professional transition, I’ll keep the title I’ve always valued most: Arlingtonian.”

The nonprofit works to promote economic and social development in Tysons, Virginia, with the aim of building a “vibrant, inclusive, globally-attractive urban center,” according to its website.

In a statement, Tysons Community Alliance Chair Josh White said Cristol “is a well-respected leader and consummate professional with experience in catalyzing communities and urban management planning efforts in transportation, sustainability and economic development.”

Cristol began serving on the Board in 2015 and served as the chair in 2018 and 2022.

Katie Cristol is stepping down from the Arlington County Board this summer after serving on the board since 2015. (Courtesy Arlington County)

“Her contributions to our collective efforts to increase opportunities for all Arlingtonians to thrive, while dismantling and reforming systems that cause them harm, have been profound and will have a lasting impact on our community,” Board Chair Christian Dorsey said in a news release.

While on the Arlington County Board, Cristol has served as Chair of the Urban Section, and on the Board of Directors, of the Virginia Municipal League since 2020.

As a Board member, Cristol has advocated for women’s issues such as reproductive health and political representation while supporting survivors of sexual assault, according to the county.

Cristol’s new position comes after she announced last year she wouldn’t be running for reelection after her current term ends this December.

Before being elected to the Board, she was appointed to the school board.

While she called her departure “bittersweet,” Cristol said she “couldn’t be more excited,” to take over as CEO of Tysons Community Alliance.

“The work is right at the intersection of transit, walkability and housing; it’s all about leading coalitions in pursuit of big goals, like equitable growth and sustainable, livable places,” she said. “And it builds on a vision of an interconnected Northern Virginia region that motivates me and energizes me.”

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Jessica Kronzer

Jessica Kronzer graduated from James Madison University in May 2021 after studying media and politics. She enjoys covering politics, advocacy and compelling human-interest stories.

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