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Leadership changes, new General Authorities, Presiding Bishopric, and Relief Society presidency announced

The First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced a new member of the presidency of the Seventy, three new General Authorities, a new Presiding Bishopric, a new Relief Society general presidency, and 40 Area Seventies, at the Saturday afternoon session of the Church's 182nd Annual General Conference being held here this weekend.

Presiding Bishopric released during the Saturday afternoon session.
Presiding Bishopric released during the Saturday afternoon session. Photo: Intellectual Reserve, Inc.
Relief Society general presidency released during the Saturday afternoon session.
Relief Society general presidency released during the Saturday afternoon session. Photo: Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

Elder Richard J. Maynes, 61, was named to the Presidency of the Seventy, succeeding Elder Steven E. Snow.

Called as General Authorities to serve in the First Quorum of the Seventy are Elder Larry Echo Hawk, Arlington, Va.; Elder Robert C. Gay, Palm Beach, Fla.; and Elder Scott D. Whiting, Kailua, Hawaii.

Members of the Seventy have responsibility for administering the work of the Church throughout the world under the direction of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Some of them also have executive responsibilities in a number of Church departments. Members of the First Quorum of the Seventy usually serve to age 70.

Called as members of the Presiding Bishopric are Gary E. Stevenson, Presiding Bishop; Gérald Caussé, first counselor; and Dean M. Davies, second counselor. Members of the Presiding Bishopric, under the direction of the First Presidency, serve as the presidency of the Aaronic Priesthood and administer the Church's temporal affairs.

A new Relief Society general presidency was also announced. Sister Linda K. Burton was called as the general president of the Relief Society, the Church's organization for women. Sister Carole M. Stephens and Sister Linda S. Reeves will serve as first and second counselors. Sister Julie B. Beck, Sister Silvia H. Allred and Sister Barbara Thompson were released and received an expression of gratitude for their five years of leadership.

Presidency of the First Quorum of the Seventy

Elder Richard J. Maynes, 61, was named to the Presidency of the Seventy, succeeding Elder Steven E. Snow. Elder Maynes was serving in the First Quorum of the Seventy when he was called to the Presidency.

He previously served as Executive Director of the Family History Department, as Assistant Executive Director of the Priesthood and Missionary Departments, as president of the Philippines and South America West Areas, as mission president and full-time missionary.

Elder Maynes formerly owned and was CEO of a company specializing in factory automation. He received a bachelor of science degree from Brigham Young University in business management and an MBA from Thunderbird: School of Global Management.

Elder Maynes was born in Berkeley, Calif. He is married to Nancy Jane Purrington. They have four children and nine grandchildren.

Missionary choir sings during the Saturday afternoon session.
Missionary choir sings during the Saturday afternoon session. Photo: Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

First Quorum of the Seventy

Elder Larry Echo Hawk, 63, was serving as a high priest group instructor when he was called to the First Quorum of the Seventy, and has served in numerous Church callings including bishop and stake president.

He received a bachelor's degree from Brigham Young University and a law degree from the University of Utah. A member of the Pawnee Nation, Elder Echo Hawk was serving as the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, U.S. Department of the Interior when he accepted his call to the Seventy. In his career, he also was a law professor at Brigham Young University's J. Reuben Clark Law School, served as Attorney General of Idaho, as a county prosecuting attorney and in the Idaho House of Representatives.

Elder Echo Hawk was born in Cody, Wyo. He is married to Teresa Joanne Pries and they are the parents of six children.

Elder Robert C. Gay, 60, was serving as an Area Seventy in the North America Southeast Area when he was called to the First Quorum of the Seventy.

He has served in numerous Church callings including full-time missionary in Spain, ward mission leader, high priest group leader, gospel doctrine teacher, ward Young Men president, high councilor, bishop's counselor, and mission president.

Elder Gay received a bachelor of arts degree in economics and statistics from University of Utah and a Ph.D. in business economics from Harvard University. Professionally he worked in the financial services and business consulting industries and was an economics instructor at Harvard University.

He was born in Los Angeles, Calif. He is married to Lynette Nielsen and they are the parents of seven children.

Elder Scott D. Whiting, 50, was serving as an Area Seventy in the North America West Area in Tokyo, Japan, when called to the First Quorum of the Seventy. His past Church callings include full-time missionary in the Japan Tokyo North Mission, elders quorum president, bishop, stake Young Men president, high councilor and stake president.

Elder Whiting received a bachelor's degree in Japanese from Brigham Young University and a law degree from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. Professionally he worked in agricultural management and in real estate development. He has served on a number of non-profit boards.

He was born in Salt Lake City and is married to Jeri Lin Olson. They are the parents of five children.

Presiding Bishopric

Bishop Gary E. Stevenson, 56, was serving as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy and as president of the Asia North Area at the time of his call to the Presiding Bishopric. His previous Church service includes full-time missionary in the Japan Fukuoka Mission, high councilor, bishop, stake president's counselor, president of the Japan Nagoya Mission and ward Sunday School teacher.

He received a bachelor of science degree in business administration from Utah State University. He co-founded Icon Health & Fitness, Inc. where he served as president and chief operating officer until 2008. He was involved in civic activities and served on boards and advisory councils.

Bishop Stevenson was raised in Cache Valley, Utah. He is married to Lesa Jean Higley and they are the parents of four sons.

Bishop Gérald Caussé, 48, was serving as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy and as a counselor in the Europe Area Presidency when he accepted the call to the Presiding Bishopric. His Church service includes elders quorum president, bishop's counselor, stake president's counselor, stake president, and Area Seventy.

Bishop Caussé received a master's degree in business from ESSEC, and his career has been in the food industry where he has worked with several supermarket chains and food distribution companies. He was the general manager of Pomona, a food distribution company in France until 2008. He also worked as the director of logistics for the Carrefour group, an international grocery retail firm.

He was born in Bordeaux, France. He is married to Valérie Lucienne Babin. They have five children and one grandson.

Bishop Dean M. Davies, 60, was employed by the Church as the managing director of the Special Projects Department with responsibility for special purpose real estate, temple design and temple construction when he was called to the Presiding Bishopric.

In the Church, he has served as a mission president, mission president's counselor, stake president, stake president's counselor, stake executive secretary, high councilor, in several bishoprics and as a full-time missionary in the Uruguay/Paraguay Mission.

Prior to Church employment, Bishop Davies worked in the real estate investment, construction and management industries. He earned a bachelor's degree in agricultural economics from Brigham Young University and has completed advanced executive programs at Stanford and Northwestern Universities.

He was born in Salt Lake City and is married to Darla James. They have five children and 14 grandchildren.

General Authorities Moving From Second Quorum to First Quorum of the Seventy

Craig A. Cardon, 63, Salt Lake City, Utah

Stanley G. Ellis, 65, Centerville, Utah

Relief Society General Presidency

Sister Linda K. Burton was serving as a member of the Relief Society general board when she received her call to serve as the organization's president. In her Church callings, she spent three years serving with her husband as he presided over the Korea Soul West Mission. They returned from Korea in 2010. She also served on the Primary general board, and in various callings in the Young Women, Primary, Sunday School and as a seminary teacher.

She studied elementary education at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City and is married to Craig P. Burton. They have six children and 19 grandchildren.

Sister Carole M. Stephens was also serving on the Relief Society general board when she accepted the call to serve as first counselor in the general presidency. She has also served as stake and ward Relief Society president, ward Relief Society counselor, teacher and homemaking leader, ward Young Women president, member of a ward Primary presidency, Primary teacher, Cub Scout leader, Church-service missionary and seminary teacher.

She attended Weber State University in Ogden, Utah, and is a member of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers, where she serves as the Farr West camp captain.

She is married to Martin R. Stephens. They are the parents of six children and 15 grandchildren.

Sister Linda S. Reeves was serving as the first counselor in her ward's Relief Society when she was called to serve in the Relief Society general presidency. Previously she served with her husband when he was president of the California Riverside Mission. She also served as stake Relief Society president, ward Young Women president, ward young single adult adviser, Sunday School teacher and Primary music leader.

She graduated from Brigham Young University with a bachelor of science degree in special education. She is married to Melvyn K. Reeves and they are the parents of 13 children.

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