Donald Haber announced today that he will retire as executive director and COO of BAFTA Los Angeles, effective May 31, 2015. Having informed the board earlier this year of his decision, he will help with the selection and transition of a new chief executive.
Haber joined the BAFTA Los Angeles board of directors in 1994, was elected treasurer in 1996, was appointed executive director in 1998, and was awarded the additional title of COO in 2006. During his tenure, he worked alongside seven BAFTA L.A. chairpersons: Arnold Schwartzman, Su Lesser, Gary Dartnall (who served two separate terms), Peter Morris, Nigel Lythgoe, Neil Stiles and current chairperson Nigel Daly.
“Donald has provided exceptional leadership, overseeing significant growth of BAFTA L.A. these past 20 years,” Daly said. “Our membership, staff, financial resources, community outreach, screenings and learning programs, Britannia Awards and the popular Tea Parties — all have grown dramatically despite two recessions and major changes in our industries. Haber has also been a leader in creating closer bonds with BAFTA in the U.K., and a strong advocate for an international BAFTA. BAFTA is now better recognized and more respected and the membership and board are grateful for Don’s many contributions.”
Under Haber’s watch, BAFTA has taken on a more prominent role during Hollywood’s awards season, with both the Britannia Awards and the BAFTA Film Awards achieving higher profiles.
“BAFTA is an outstanding organization, and I am grateful for the many friends within BAFTA and the wonderful accomplishments we have achieved together. It has been an honor to have worked alongside my fellow members, and I am especially pleased knowing that BAFTA L.A. has just had its best year both financially and creatively in its 26 years,” Haber said.