The board of directors of Acacia Mutual Life Insurance Co. has elected Duane B. Adams to the position of president and chief operating officer effective Jan. 1, 1980. Adams is only the fourth president in the company's 101-year history. Adams succeeds current president Daniel L. Hurson who will continue to serve as chairman of the board and chief executive officer.

Adams began his career in 1957 as an agent with Great Southern Life in Texas. In 1963, he joined Pan-American Life as assistant director of training. In 1974, he was elected senior vice president of Pan-American, with responsibility for U.S. insurance operations. Adams joined Acacia in 1975.

Jack W. Tarver, publisher of the Atlanta Journal and Constitution, was re-elected chairman of The Associated Press last week at a reorganization meeting of the news cooperative's board of directors.

Frank Batten, chairman of the board of Landmark Communications Inc., of Norfolk, Va., was named first vice chairman. Stanton R. Cook, chairman and publisher of the Chicago Tribune, was named second vice chairman.

Three directors were appointed as representatives of the AP's broadcast members.

Ralph Renick, vice president for television news operations of the Wometco Enterprises, Miami, was reappointed to a second two-year term.

New to the board are William Leonard, president of CBS News, and Charles Whitehurst, president and general manager of WFMY-TV, Greensboro, N.C.

Neil Boggs, former newsman with WJLA-TV, has been named director of public information for the American Bus Association.

Before joining WJLA, Boggs was with NBC News as a reporter and news broadcaster. He has more than 32 years experience as a journalist.

Norvill Jones has joined Reynolds Metals Co. as director of government relations. Jones was formerly chief of staff of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

Cabot R. Caskie has been elected vice president of Survival Technology Inc. Caskie will stay on as treasurer of the firm, a position he has held since 1976.

Before joining Survival, Caskie was with the Washington office of Price Waterhouse & Co.

James F. Collins has been named executive vice president and treasurer of the American Iron and Steel Institute. He has served as senior vice president of the institute since 1972.

Collins began his career with Kaiser Aluminum and Chemical Corp. In 1962, he was named deputy assistant secretary of Commerce for business policy.

Gregory F. McGowan has been appointed associate manager of government affairs of the Firestone Tire and Rubber Co. Before joining Firestone, McGowan served as chief investigator for the House investigations subcommittee of the Post Office and Civil Service Committee.

Donald J. Heim, president of Washington Gas Light Co., has been elected president of the Maryland-District of Columbia Utilities Association.

Heim joined WGL in 1950. He was named assistant to the president in 1964. From 1968 to 1973 Heim held the positions of assistant director and director of corporate planning. He was elected vice president of corporate planning and services in 1973.In 1977, he was elected president and a director of the company.