A familiar face is returning to the top position at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown—for now, temporarily. Less than two years after retiring from his position as president in June of 2019, Jeff Idelson will this year be returning as its interim president.
On April 16, most recent president Tim Mead announced that he would be leaving the organization by mid-May. Idelson makes a logical interim choice, given that, besides already serving as its president, he began working at the Hall in 1994 as director of public relations and promotion, before being promoted to vice president of communications and education four years later (earlier in his career, he also did turns with the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees).
Even with Idelson now installed as interim president, the Hall’s board of directors is still on the lookout for a permanent replacement, having formed a search committee. The members of the committee include Chairman of the Board Jane Forbes Clark; Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred; Dr. Harvey Schiller, the former CEO of YankeeNets; and Hall of Famer Cal Ripken, Jr.
In its 82-year history of the Hall, just seven individuals have served as president: Stephen C. Clark, Sr., founder of the Hall of Fame and grandfather of current chairman; Jane Forbes Clark; Paul Kerr; Edward W. Stack; Donald C. Marr Jr.; Dale A. Petroskey; Idelson; and Mead.
Most recently, Idelson had cofounded Grassroots Baseball, a nonprofit with the mission of promoting and celebrating the amateur game of baseball around the globe, with a focus on growing interest and participation at its youngest levels.