Just ahead of its 50th anniversary in 2020, Boston-based publisher David R. Godine announced that the company’s eponymous founder and owner will step down as publisher at the end of the year. Godine’s new owner, William N. Thorndike Jr., is already starting to shape the press. A new management team will come on board in July.

“As the new owner of Godine, I’m delighted to continue and hopefully extend the company’s tradition of publishing excellence and believe we have made significant strides in that direction with the addition of two new hires to our team: David Allender, a very talented Godine alum, and Josh Bodwell, a passionate and gifted bookman,” Thorndike told PW.

The transfer in ownership began several years ago and Thorndike, who is a member of the Godine board of directors, will be fully vested in the company later this year. He founded Housatonic Partners in Boston in 1994 and is also the author of a book about CEOs, The Outsiders (Harvard Business Review Press).

Former Godine staffer Allender will return as managing director. He held the position of senior v-p, editorial director at Scholastic Book Clubs for more than a decade, and has held editorial positions at Workman, Book-of-the-Month Club, and Crown. “I’m overjoyed to go back where I first fell in love with publishing, to build on David’s decades of distinguished achievement and be part of many great things to come,” he said.

Bodwell, who was executive director of the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance and recently oversaw the publication of the three-volume collected short stories and novellas of Andre Dubus for Godine, will serve as editorial director.

Both Bodwell and Allender will report to Thorndike and Godine.