A Fond Farewell

Visit Alexandria bids adieu to Patricia Washington.

“This feels like the right time for my retirement both organizationally and personally.”

— Visit Alexandria CEO Patricia Washington


Photo/Derek Lamar studios

Patricia Washington stands with a farewell art piece at a retirement celebration in her honor of her time at the helm of Visit Alexandria June 6 at the Freeman Company at Canal Center Plaza.


The annual Summer Social hosted by Visit Alexandria was bittersweet this year as the event served as a farewell to Patricia Washington, who for 12 years has served as the organization’s president and CEO.

Held June 6 at the Freeman Company at Canal Center Plaza, the event was attended by business owners and elected officials who gathered to wish Washington well.

“It’s been such a privilege to lead Visit Alexandria’s vision, culture and content-first marketing strategy for more than 11 years, and this feels like the right time for my retirement both organizationally and personally,” said Washington in announcing her retirement late last year. “Visit Alexandria is in excellent shape, with a high-performing staff, strong partnerships, clear plans, stable finances and growing tourism revenues. On a personal level, I’m hoping to do some more extensive travel and have more time to pursue interests at a point in life where I have the passion and energy to fully explore them.”

Since beginning her role as president and CEO in 2012, Washington led the destination marketing organization for the City of Alexandria to several milestone achievements, including record visitor spending, hotel occupancy, consumption tax revenues, press hits, website visitation, digital marketing impressions, group business, event attendance and membership.

Attendees enjoyed panoramic waterfront views at the Freeman Company’s venue, alongside jazz performances from Yellow Door Concert Series and catering from Purple Onion and Bread and Water Company.

Under Washington’s leadership, Alexandria garnered top accolades as a destination for visitors in major publications including Travel + Leisure, Condé Nast Traveler and Southern Living.

“Patricia raised the bar for all of us and with all of us,” said Visit Alexandria’s Board Chair and General Manager at Hotel Indigo Kate Ellis. “Her passion and positivity inspired us to reach higher and move Alexandria onto the national stage.”