Some of the best known names in Republican politics will gather at the Madison Hotel Friday night for a black-tie salute to Max Fisher, Detroit industrialist and loyal supporter of Republican presidents. The 77-year-old close friend of former presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford helped bring the corporate crowd into Ronald Reagan's 1980 presidential campaign.

Among the celebrity Republicans who have said they will attend are Vice President George Bush, Treasury Secretary James Baker, Attorney General Edwin Meese, Secretary of State George Shultz, Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, former ambassador Arthur Burns, former White House deputy chief of staff Michael Deaver, former senator Jacob Javits, former secretary of state Henry Kissinger, Sens. Paul Laxalt, Rudy Boschwitz and Daniel Patrick Moynihan, former undersecretary of state Joseph Sisco and USIA Director Charles Z. Wick.

The dinner will be hosted by one-time counsel to former president Nixon Leonard Garment and his wife Suzanne. Garment said yesterday that if it weren't that the Republican Regional Conference was also taking place Friday, the turnout would have even more GOP personalities. Sen. Robert Dole, former senator Howard Baker, Rep. Jack Kemp and former secretary of state Alexander Haig said they could not be at Fisher's dinner because they will be at the conference. End Notes

Nicholas M. Horrock, who has worked for several major news organizations, has been appointed to the newly created position of Washington editor of the Chicago Tribune. Horrock, who spent a substantial part of his early career at the old Washington Daily News, twice worked for Newsweek, where he was an urban affairs correspondent, deputy bureau chief in Saigon and national security correspondent and directed the Watergate coverage. He also worked for The New York Times, where he was a senior investigative correspondent. Ray Coffey, the Tribune's Washington bureau chief, is returning to Chicago to become associate editor of the newspaper, and Jon Margolis, a member of the bureau, will now fill the new post of Washington correspondent . . .

"The New Painting: Impressionism 1874-1886" show at the National Gallery has been so popular and the lines so long that many government and Capitol Hill leaders have been unable to find time to get to the gallery. AT&T, the exhibition sponsor, held a reception last night at the gallery to give some 550 of the leaders an opportunity to see the show privately without lines or crowded galleries. Among the guests were former head of the Democratic Party Chuck Manatt and Sens. Edward Kennedy, Russell Long, Lloyd Bentsen, Bob Packwood, Claiborne Pell, Frank R. Lautenberg and John C. Danforth . . .

Doctors at the National Institutes of Health are cautiously encouraged that Illinois Rep. John Grotberg may be coming out of a coma for the first time since his Jan. 27 heart attack. His press secretary, Steve Trossman, said the 60-year-old congressman shows signs of "cognitive response," such as smiling at jokes . . .

Yesterday's Personalities column was a bit confused on just where the profits would be going for Pocket Books' "Challengers: The Inspiring Life Stories of the Seven Brave Astronauts of Shuttle Mission 51-L," which will be published Friday. The 192-page book was written and edited by 21 staff members of The Washington Post. The writers and editors will be paid for their work, and The Washington Post will contribute all of the book's earnings to one of the funds being established for the astronauts' children. Pocket Books will also donate a portion of its proceeds to a similar fund . . .

Actor, comedian, musician, gourmet cook, a man of all things, Danny Kaye was honored Monday in Paris by the French Minister of Culture Jack Lang, who awarded him the French Legion of Honor for his activities as UNICEF's international ambassador at large, a position he has held for 32 years. Among the film personalities present to see Kaye receive his medal were Bette Davis, Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner and Olivia de Havilland . . .