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Press Releases


February 19, 2015

Rebecca Diamond to head newly-established Development Department, Karen Simonet joins as Director of Retail

WASHINGTON, DC—The International Spy Museum is pleased to announce the appointment of two new directors joining the senior leadership team this month: Director of Development Rebecca Diamond and Director of Retail Karen Simonet.

"The addition of these seasoned and proven business leaders only further strengthens our mission to engage with and educate the public about espionage and intelligence," said Chief Operating Officer Tamara Christian.

Ms. Rebecca Diamond, Director of DevelopmentMs. Diamond is an experienced non-profit fundraising leader with an understanding of how to cultivate influential relationships that lead to the success of non-profits. Ms. Diamond was previously the Chief Development Officer for Mary’s Center for Maternal & Child Care, Inc., a regional non-profit organization that provides health care, education, and social services to the underserved and underinsured—where she was responsible for $18 million in fundraising and annual grant revenue.

As the Museum’s new Director of Development, Rebecca is the foundation of the newly-established Development Department, which will manage fundraising, Board cultivation, donor management, and grant writing. The Department’s creation is an instrumental step forward in the ongoing process toward transitioning the Museum to a non-profit institution.

Ms. Karen Simonet, Director of RetailMs. Simonet brings more than 15 years of retail management experience with a proven history of increasing sales, most recently for merchandising giant PEEPS & COMPANY®. She takes over the Museum’s thriving retail component, a one-stop-shop for all things spy-related, from toys to tradecraft to literature. With 5,000-square-feet devoted to a diverse selection of merchandise that mirrors the Museum’s presentation of espionage and intelligence found within its permanent collection, visitors to the International Spy Museum Store can always find the best tools of the trade.

Both join the Spy Museum during a turning point in the institution’s history, and will be highly influential in its immediate and sustainable future. The Malrite Company and Museum leadership remain in the process of identifying a new permanent home which to relocate, and continue its transition to a non-profit institution.

As one of the first large-scale museums to venture past the National Mall, the Spy Museum is an economic development innovator in the Penn Quarter neighborhood. The Museum attracts more than 600,000 visitors annually, and provides a significant economic benefit to the city. 



The International Spy Museum is the only public museum in the United States solely dedicated to the tradecraft, history, and contemporary role of espionage and intelligence. Open since July 2002, the Museum features the largest collection of international espionage artifacts ever placed on public display. The mission of the International Spy Museum is to educate the public about espionage and intelligence in an engaging way and to provide a context that fosters understanding of their important role in and impact on current and historic events. The Museum's permanent collection chronicles the history of espionage, from its inception, to the modern day challenges facing intelligence professionals worldwide in the 21st Century and the looming threat of Cyber War in Weapons of Mass Disruption. For more information, please visit Shop online at

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