This is the first in a three-part post to run this week.
by John English:
I did a previous post on guessing who the next Apostle might be, but we've hit a rare section in time in the LDS church when two Apostles will be called at the same time. This has happened before. Dieter F. Uchtdorf and David A. Bednar were called together in 2004. Russell M. Nelson and Dallin H. Oaks were called together in 1984 (though Oaks had to wait a month to be set apart). Before that you have to go back to Spencer W. Kimball and Ezra Taft Benson in 1943. When two Apostles are called the same day, the older one has seniority.
Never in the history of the LDS Church has an Apostle been called that the prophet wasn't already acquainted with on some level.
I wanted to expand the field in this post, look at a broader section of who it could be, and also take into account two being called at the same time. But first, let's look at the current 13, and where they came from. (By seniority)
RUSSELL M. NELSON - Called to be an Apostle at age 59 in 1984. He came about his service in a rare way. He performed open-heart surgery on Spencer W. Kimball in 1972, around the same time he was called to be Sunday School General President. He served in that calling for eight years and then a regional representative for four years when he was called to be an Apostle. Career expertise: Medicine
DALLIN H. OAKS - Called to be an Apostle at age 51 in 1984. Oaks was well-known by the Brethren when they called him to be president of BYU, where he served for nine years. He then instantly joined the Utah Supreme Court but resigned from that once he was called to be an Apostle. Oaks was not currently serving in church leadership when he was called. Career expertise: Law, Church Education
M. RUSSELL BALLARD - Called to be an Apostle two days before his 57th birthday in 1985. He was the grandson of apostle Hyrum M. Smith and great-grandson of Joseph F. Smith. On his other side, he was the grandson Melvin J. Ballard, who served for years in the Q12 with Gordon B. Hinckley's uncle Alonzo. He was a mission president when he was called to join the First Quorum of the Seventy, and he was in the Presidency of the Seventy when called to be an Apostle. At the time, Pres. Kimball and 1st Counselor Marion G. Romney were incapacitated, so this calling likely came from 2nd Counselor Hinckley as anyone else. Ballard's daughter married David B. Haight's grandson. Career expertise: Business
RICHARD G. SCOTT - Called to be an Apostle at age 59 in 1988. His father worked closely with Ezra Taft Benson in Washington DC. He was a misson president, then a regional representative, then joined the First Quorum of Seventy, then in the Presidency of the Seventy when called. Career expertise: Nuclear Science
ROBERT D. HALES - Called to be an Apostle at age 61 in 1994. He was called to the First Quorum of Seventy in 1976, then he served as Presiding Bishop the nine years leading up to his calling as Apostle and was considered key in balancing church finances in the 1980's and 1990's. He'd run several successful businesses before his calling. Career expertise: Business
JEFFREY R. HOLLAND - Called to be an Apostle at age 53 in 1994. He succeeded Oaks as President of BYU. Nine years later he went straight from there to the First Quorum of Seventy. he also served as Commissioner of the Church Educations System (CES). Career expertise: Church Education
HENRY B. EYRING - Called to be an Apostle at age 61 in 1995. He was the third Apostle in as many General Conferences to be called, and after him, the Church went nine years before another one was needed. He is married to Pres. Kimball's niece. He was president of Rick's College. He was a Commissioner of CES. He was a Counselor to Hales in the Presiding Bishopric, and he was in the First Quorum of Seventy when he was called to be an Apostle. Career expertise: Business, Physics, Church Education
DIETER F. UCHTDORF - Called to be an Apostle at age 63 in 2004. He'd been a stake president, in the 2nd Quorum of Seventy, 1st Quorum of Seventy, then in Presidency of Seventy when called to be an Apostle. Career expertise: Aviation, Business
DAVID A. BEDNAR - Called to be an Apostle ate age 51 in 2004. He succeeded Eyring as president of Ricks' College and helped transition it into BYU-Idaho. He was an area authority while he worked at BYUI. Career expertise: Church Education
QUENTIN L. COOK - Called to be an Apostle at age 67 in 2007. His mother was a Kimball, so he's second-cousins with Spencer W. He was a missionary companion of Holland. He went from bishop to stake president to area authority to 2nd Quorum of Seventy to 1st Quorum of Seventy to Presidency of the Seventy to Apostle. Career expertise: Business, Law
D. TODD CHRISTOFFERSON - Called to be an Apostle at age 63 in 2008. Richard G. Scott was his mission president when he served his mission. He was called to the 1st Quorum of Seventy in 1993 and in the Presidency of the Seventy in 1998. He was executive director for the Family & Church History Department. Career expertise: Law
NEIL L. ANDERSEN - Called to be an Apostle at age 57 in 2009. He'd been called the the 1st Quorum of Seventy in 1993 and into the Presidency of the Seventy in 2005. Career expertise: Business
So these are their experiences and how they may have been known before they will called. One should expect there will be prior relationships for the new Apostles. So first let's look at the likely pool of talent.
THE PRESIDENCY OF THE SEVENTY
Statistically it's a virtual guarantee that one of the two will come from this field, if not both. The Presidency of the Seventy works most closely and most often with the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve than any other Seventy. Four of the last five Apostles called came from the Presidency of the Seventy. The Prophet will have a good idea of how these men could fit into the Quorum.
2. L. WHITNEY CLAYTON (2/24/1950) was a partner at a law firm before his calling to the 1st Quorum of 70 in 2001. He served as assistant executive director to the Family & Church History Department with Christofferson. He helped Ballard and Cook with the church's efforts on Prop 8, and he was called to Presidency of the Seventy in 2008. He's said to have been involved with regional training that led to more high-profile excommunications like Kate Kelly and John Dehlin. I think if he were selected, he'd be more in the Packer/Ballard retrenchment mold of Apostle. Career expertise: Law
3. DONALD L. HALLSTROM (7/27/1949) was born and raised in Hawaii and worked in real estate out there. He was president of the Honolulu Hawaii stake before getting called as a regional representative, then area authority, then to the 1st Quorum of Seventy in 2000. He's been in the Presidency since 2009. Career expertise: Real Estate, Finance
4. RICHARD J. MAYNES (10/29/1950) played basketball at BYU before graduating from there in business management. He went on to be CEO of Fountain Fresh Intl. He was a mission president in Mexico Monterrey and was called to the 2nd Quorum of 70 in 1997, moved to 1st Quorum in 2001, and joined the Presidency in 2012. Career expertise: Business
5. CRAIG C. CHRISTENSEN (3/18/1956) played football at BYU before graduating from there in accounting. He later got an MBA and after buying some companies, he taught at BYU. He was a mission president for Mexico Mexico City and was called to 2nd Quorum of 70 in 2002, then moved to 1st Quorum in 2008 before being called to Presidency in 2012. Career expertise: Business
6. ULISSES SOARES (10/2/1958) is our first non-American option. He was born and raised in Sao Paolo, Brazil. He earned his MBA and after working at a tire company, he got a job as a senior auditor before becoming director of temporal affairs for the LDS Church's Brazil South area. He was a mission president in Portugal and he joined the 1st Quorum of 70 in 2005 before joining the Presidency in 2013. Career expertise: Business, Finance
7. LYNN G. ROBBINS (10/27/1952) was one of the co-founders of Franklin Quest, which later became FranklinCovey. He was a mission president in Uruguay Montevideo and was then called to the 2nd Quorum of 70 in 1997. He moved to 1st Quorum of 70 in 2000 and joined the Presidency in 2014. Career expertise: Business
There are 63 members of the 1st Quorum of the Seventy and 21 members in the 2nd Quorum, so I won't profile them all. I'll just focus on ones I think are likely under consideration.
But first, it's been a while since someone from the Presiding Bishopric was called as an Apostle, so I'll profile those three on Wednesday.
John English is a technical project manager living in Utah. He was born in California and also lived in Texas, Washington, Idaho and Wyoming as a kid. He served his mission in Washington Seattle and graduated from Utah Valley University. In his 18+ years of blissful marriage, he's begat five children, adopted six more, and fostered still more beyond that. He's also a movie buff, political junkie, and Utah Jazz fan. Twitter: @jermsguy. Blog: johnslds.blogspot.com.