Scenic Overlook Closed for Renovations

The Scenic Overlook is closed for construction, with a new deck expected to reopen this fall. The Nature Trail between the buildings remains open.

City of Virginia Beach & Foundation Partnership

The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center is a collaboration between the City of Virginia Beach and the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center Foundation.

The City of Virginia Beach owns and maintains the Aquarium's buildings and grounds, and provides administrative support for such services as accounting and human resources.

The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center Foundation procures and maintains the Aquarium's collections, including its fish and animals, habitats, and interactive exhibits. The Foundation is also responsible for annual and capital fundraising, the Virginia Aquarium Stranding Response Program, conservation, and scientific research efforts, as well as all of the Aquarium's mission-related education programs.

Many Tools for a Single Goal

While the Virginia Aquarium rests securely in the partnership between the City of Virginia Beach and the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center Foundation, it carries out important mission work through its many branches. The Virginia Aquarium is a multifaceted organization, with each arm diligently working to reach a single goal - to inspire a more sustainable future.

Diver Snorkling Around Coral

Research & Conservation

The Virginia Aquarium is at the forefront of marine conservation research in both direct involvements and global partnerships. From AZA initiatives like the Species Survival Program and SAFE to coral restoration with SECORE and university projects, the Aquarium plays a vital role in this important work.

Vets Helping Turtle

Stranding Response Program

Our Darden Marine Animal Conservation Center (DMACC) features state-of-the-art labs, rehab facilities, and holding facilities for quarantined animals. Our nationally recognized Stranding Response Program carries out its work of responding to, evaluating, and when needed, rehabilitating stranded marine mammals and sea turtles.

Staff Member Teaching a Class

Education & Outreach

We are dedicated to providing educational resources for teachers, parents, and students of all ages. We develop learning opportunities centered around conservation, marine life, and connecting to nature. Our Education Team creates programs to meet a variety of curriculum and learning needs and offers programs onsite, in the schools, and virtually.

Shark Swimming in Aquarium

Animals & Exhibits

Discover life under the sea at one of the country's finest aquariums. Explore over 800,000 gallons of exhibit space and thousands of animals representing over 300 species, displayed in state-of-the-art and educational habitats. Travel an aquatic journey from the shore to the depths of the Atlantic Ocean and experience coastal habitats from around the world. The Virginia Aquarium is ready to enchant and inspire you!

Our Executive Team​

Meet the Executive Team for the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center.

Cynthia Whitbred Spanoulis

Cynthia Whitbred-Spanoulis

President and CEO

Caryl Thompson

Caryl Thompson

Chief Operating Officer

Shandra Square

Shandra Cummings

Chief of Staff

DR Allyson Mc Naughton

Dr. Allyson McNaughton

Chief of Veterinary Services

Suzanne Savage

Suzanne Savage

Chief Development Officer

Sean Murphy

Sean Murphy

Business Analyst

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