A nationwide search for a new Director of Arlington Economic Development found someone close to home: in Alexandria.
Arlington County announced that Ryan Touhill, Senior Vice President of the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership, will assume AED’s top job on Monday, Nov. 28.
Touhill, 38, takes the reins after a turbulent few years at the top ranks of the county’s economic development arm.
He succeeds Shannon Flanagan-Watson, AED’s interim director following the departure of Telly Tucker, who served just over two years in the role. Tucker left for a new job this spring, around the same time as AED Deputy Director Cynthia Richmond retired.
Prior to Tucker’s arrival, the leadership team that helped woo Amazon and its HQ2 to Arlington decamped to neighboring counties. Former AED director Victor Hoskins and interim director Alex Iams were both poached by Fairfax County, while Christina Winn left for Prince William County.
In a press release, below, county officials tout Touhill’s “track record of leading local business expansions for new investments in the region” and his ability to foster “innovation and resiliency to advance economic growth and competitiveness.”
Arlington County Manager Mark Schwartz announced today the selection of Ryan Touhill as the new Director of Arlington Economic Development (AED) following a nationwide recruitment and search. Mr. Touhill has extensive experience in overseeing day-to day operations of a local economic development agency and a proven track record at implementing local small business grant and economic recovery programs, fostering regional cooperation, and playing key roles in business development attraction and retention in this local and regional market. He will play a pivotal role in building on Arlington’s strong economic competitive position as a regional, national, and international business and visitor location. Mr. Touhill will assume this new leadership role on November 28, 2022.
“Mr. Touhill has a track record of leading local business expansions for new investments in the region,” stated Arlington County Board Chair Katie Cristol. “My colleagues on the Board and I look forward to working with him to continue building on our success in attracting and growing high-quality businesses, both large and small, in Arlington.”
“I am thrilled to have Ryan at the helm of our Economic Development team, leading our community through an exciting period of commercial growth post-pandemic recovery”, stated County Manager Mark Schwartz. “He will be instrumental in fostering innovation and resiliency to advance economic growth and competitiveness in our community for small businesses and large corporations as well as foster real estate development, tourism, arts and cultural amenities.”
Prior to this appointment, Mr. Touhill served as both the Senior Vice President and Chief of Staff with the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership (AEDP). In these leadership roles, he has been instrumental in managing the daily activities of AEDP’s Business Development, Small Business, and Economic Recovery departments and was responsible for managing AEDP’s internal business operations. While at AEDP, he also served on the project management team responsible for securing Amazon’s second headquarters in Northern Virginia and Virginia Tech’s Innovation Campus in Alexandria. In addition, Mr. Touhill has held positions with the City of Alexandria government in the budget and human resources departments.
“Arlington is a dynamic and innovative community that has proven it can achieve smart, sustainable growth for businesses and residents alike,” shared Ryan Touhill. “I am excited about this opportunity to bring my passion of service to ensure that Arlington County is a top business destination.”
“Coming out of the pandemic, this is an ideal time to bring on a respected regional leader,” shared Mr. Jason El Koubi, President and CEO of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership. “I am confident that Mr. Touhill will continue to strengthen important collaborative partnerships with Arlington’s business community across the region and the Commonwealth. He will be a critical partner as we work together to strengthen our economic development capacity and accelerate the growth of tech startup companies and entrepreneurs.”
Touhill has been recognized for his service by the City of Alexandria, the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce, and Virginia Business magazine. And, has previously served on the Board of Directors of ‘Rebuilding Together DC-Alexandria’ and as a youth mentor with ‘Space of His Own’. Touhill holds a Bachelor of Arts from George Mason University and a Master of Public Administration from the George Washington University. He is an avid runner and hiker, often out enjoying Virginia’s trails in his spare time.
Touhill succeeds Shannon Flanagan-Watson who has been serving as the Interim Director for Economic Development while a national search was conducted.
About Arlington Economic Development
Arlington Economic Development (AED) is committed to helping Arlington thrive as an economically vital, competitive and sustainable community by providing leadership and services to Arlington’s business, real estate, tourism and cultural affairs sectors.
The AED team leads groundbreaking programs designed to attract and retain business in Arlington. And help businesses get the tools and resources needed to grow and succeed in our community.
I-395 Ramp Closure — “Beginning at 5 a.m. Friday, Dec. 1, weather permitting, the ramp from southbound I-395 to eastbound Boundary Channel Drive (Exit 9/Clark Street) and the eastbound Boundary…
Fully updated; remodeled Bas; open family room w/vaulted ceiling; 1-car garage
Good Thursday evening, Arlington. Let’s take a look back at today’s stories and a look forward to tomorrow’s event calendar. 🕗 News recap The following articles were published earlier today…
A look at the smallest and largest homes sold in Arlington last month, October 2023.
Children’s Weekday Program (CWP) is a non-profit preschool rooted in a play-based philosophy. We focus on developing a love of learning and exploration, cooperation, empathy, and independence.
Our caring and experienced educators create opportunities for children 16 months to 5 years old to play, learn, and grow in a nurturing environment of child-centered and developmentally appropriate experiences.
Initially established more than 50 years ago in South Arlington, CWP continues to be a lauded program in the Northern Virginia area. We are extremely proud to have been recognized as a Best Preschool in Northern Virginia Magazine for the last 4 years.
Located now in North Arlington at 2666 Military Road, CWP offers a part-time parents day out and preschool program with options to extend care both before and after school. We offer a supportive and inclusive school community for children and parents alike and welcome all families to join our school!
The Optimist Club of Arlington is holding its 77th annual Christmas tree sale!
This year, the tree sale will be held at the Knights of Columbus (5115 Little Falls Road). The lot opens for sales on November 24th. The Optimist Club is selling small and large trees ranging from tabletop size to 10 foot tall trees! Wreaths, garland, tree stands, and White House Christmas ornaments will also be for sale.
100% of all proceeds go towards helping Arlington County youth.
For more information, please visit the Arlington Optimists website at https://optimistclubofarlingtonva.org/.
Holiday Art Show featuring artists: Peter Fitzgerald, Claire Plante, Alanna Rivera, and Suzy Scollon. At the Barcroft Community House, 800 South Buchanan St., Arlington, VA. Dec. 8 from, 2 PM to 8 PM and Dec. 9 from 10 AM to
2023 Christmas Tree Sales Begin
Saturday, December 2
Get your holiday decorating off to the right start this year! We will be selling 150 Fraser firs, freshly cut and delivered from Sparta, North Carolina.