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Ohio Anti-Abortion Group To Replace Exec. Director

Ohio Right to Life is seeking a new executive director after a tumultuous year of feuding inside the anti-abortion community. In a statement Thursday, board chairman Marshal Pitchford said the opening follows a decision to elevate current director Mike Gonidakis  into a new role. He will be the group's point person on national issues, oversee its Political Action Committee and advise staff on state legislative matters. Pitchford characterized the move as "strategic restructuring" of the state's oldest and largest anti-abortion group. Gonidakis' leadership has been criticized by some anti-abortion activists who have defected from Right to Life this year. They've joined forces with a rival coalition backing a controversial bill banning most abortions at the first detectable fetal heartbeat. Ohio Right to Life declined to endorse the pending measure.