Russell M. Nelson named 17th president of LDS Church

LDS Church president Russell M. Nelson (center) is flanked by his first counselor, Dallin H. Oaks (left) and second counselor Henry B. Eyring. Photo: Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah, Jan. 16, 2018 (Gephardt Daily) — President Russell M. Nelson was announced Tuesday as the 17th president and prophet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

The announcement was made by Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles during a live broadcast from the annex of the Salt Lake Temple at 9 a.m.

Nelson was sustained and set apart in the Salt Lake Temple on Sunday, the LDS Church said in a news release. “Setting apart” is a priesthood ordinance that is performed by the laying on of hands, authorizing a man or woman to serve in a church calling. It occurs after one has been sustained by common consent to perform certain duties and responsibilities in a specific calling in a geographical or organizational part of the Church.

Nelson, 93, succeeds President Thomas S. Monson, who passed away Jan. 2.

Nelson has named President Dallin H. Oaks, 85, and President Henry B. Eyring, 84, to serve with him as his first and second counselors in the First Presidency, the Church’s highest governing body, the statement said.

Nelson also announced that M. Russell Ballard, 89, is the Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

President Russell M. Nelson

Nelson served as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles since April 7, 1984. He was president of that quorum from July 15, 2015, until his call as the LDS Church’s leader.

As a surgeon and medical researcher, Nelson’s professional work included the positions of research professor of surgery and director of the Thoracic Surgery Residency at the University of Utah and chairman of the Division of Thoracic Surgery at LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City. Read more about President Nelson.

President Dallin H. Oaks

Oaks has served as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles since May 1984. He was president of Brigham Young University from 1971 to 1980, and a justice of the Utah Supreme Court from 1980 until his resignation in 1984 to accept his calling to the apostleship. Read more about Dallin H. Oaks.

President Henry B. Eyring

Eyring served as a counselor to Monson from 2008 to 2018 and to President Gordon B. Hinckley from 2007 to 2008. He was sustained as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on April 1, 1995. Prior to full-time LDS Church service, Eyring was president of Ricks College in Rexburg, Idaho, from 1971 to 1977. He was on the faculty at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University from 1962 to 1971. Read more about Henry B. Eyring.

Acting President M. Russell Ballard

Ballard has served as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve since October 6, 1985. In 1976, he was called as a General Authority Seventy. Prior to his call as a full-time LDS Church leader, Ballard had interests in automotive, real estate and investment businesses. Read more about M. Russell Ballard.


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