Hodges, Luther Hartwell, 1898–1974, American politician, U.S. Secretary of Commerce (1961–65), b. Pittsylvania co., Va. From 1919 to 1950 he pursued a successful career in the textile industry. After his retirement from business he was elected (1952) lieutenant governor of North Carolina and succeeded to the governorship on the death of the incumbent in 1954. A Democrat, he was elected to a full term in 1956, and his administration achieved considerable success in attracting new industries to North Carolina. Appointed to the Dept. of Commerce by President John F. Kennedy, he worked to improve relations between business and government. He resigned in 1965.