Oatlands Executive Director Bonnie LePard will be leaving her post to lead The Cultural Landscape Foundation in Washington, DC, and the board of directors plans a nationwide search for her replacement.
Matt Kraycinovich, Oatlands’ director of development, will take over as interim executive director later this month.
“Oatlands will miss Bonnie’s leadership and inspirational enthusiasm, but we’re proud that Bonnie’s wonderful new opportunity reflects Oatlands’ growing national stature in the field of historic preservation,” Oatlands Chairman Doug Miller said in announcing the changes.
LePard led Oatlands’ operations for two and a half years and was credited by the board with drawning wide attention to the historic home and property south of Leesburg by hosting a new series of public events focusing on the history of Loudoun County and the Northern Virginia region. Among those programs were presentations by prominent experts detailing how the Civil War affected Loudoun’s pro-secession, pro-union and enslaved peoples; lectures on pioneering studies of the experience of enslaved persons at Oatlands and in Loudoun County; and commemorations of the 100th and 75th anniversaries of U.S. entry into World Wars I and II, respectively, and how Loudoun County experienced those wars.
During her tenure, Oatlands also made major infrastructure improvements, including the renovation, furnishing and redecoration of Inn at Oatlands Hamlet for overnight guests, the opening of a new Visitors’ Center and Museum Store and a garden irrigation system partially funded by the Leesburg Garden Club.
LePard worked with TCLF, an education and advocacy organization with a mission of connecting people to places, before coming to Oatlands on a campaign to prevent development of the Tregaron Estate in Washington, DC.
“TCLF is a dream job not only because I can continue to advocate for historic preservation, but I’ll also be able to walk to work from my house in Washington,” LePard stated.