Donald Hodel is retiring as president of Focus on the Family and will be succeeded by James D. Daly, the organization’s current chief operating officer, it was announced Feb. 25.
Hodel, 70, had served as president and chief executive officer of Focus on the Family, the Colorado-based pro-family organization, since April 2003. The move is effective immediately and will be discussed March 2 during the organization’s radio broadcast, when Hodel and Daly join Focus on the Family founder and chairman James Dobson on the program.
“Don … has set aside numerous personal and professional obligations for the last couple of years that he feels he can no longer ignore,” Dobson said in a statement. “In addition, Don believes — and our management team is in unanimous agreement — that the goals and objectives that were set forth for the ministry when he became president have all been met.
“… Don told me that a common temptation for leaders is to enjoy their job so much that they end up staying longer than they should. He realized that the Lord had enabled him to accomplish what he had set out to do — and, indeed, what he felt called to do — here at Focus, and that it would be counterproductive for him to try to carry on beyond that point.”
Hodel will remain on the organization’s board of directors, which he joined in 1995. Hodel previously served as president of the Christian Coalition and, earlier, as a cabinet member in President Reagan’s administration, first as secretary of energy and then as secretary of the interior.
Daly has been with Focus on the Family since 1989, serving mostly in the organization’s public affairs, marketing and international efforts departments. Daly became vice president of public affairs in October 2003 and then chief operating officer in November 2004.
He and his wife, Jean, have two sons.
“[T]he executive team here at Focus,” Dobson said, “has been tremendously encouraged by [Daly’s] strong desire to ‘stay the course’ in terms of doing what the ministry does best — namely, extending a helping hand to struggling families and standing up in defense of the biblical values they hold dear. At the same time, Jim has a forward-thinking spirit of innovation that will only serve to build upon that foundation in the years ahead.”
More information about the transition is available online at http://www.family.org/docstudy/newsletters/a0035609.cfm.