Gerrit W. Gong

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Gerrit W. Gong
First Quorum of the Seventy
April 3, 2010 (2010-04-03)[1][2]
Called by Thomas S. Monson
Personal details
Born Gerrit Walter Gong
(1953-12-23) December 23, 1953 (age 61)
Redwood City, California

Gerrit Walter Gong (born December 23, 1953) has been a general authority of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) since 2010. He is a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy. Prior to this he served as Assistant to the President of Brigham Young University (BYU) for Planning and Assessment.[3]

Gong was born in Redwood City, California, to Walter Gong and Jean Char. Gerrit was named after Gerrit de Jong because his mother had lived with de Jong and his wife and children while a student at BYU. His mother's family were ethnic Chinese in Hawaii, while his father's family had lived in California and other parts of the United States after his ancestors had emigrated from China in the late 19th century.

Gong graduated from Cubberley High School in Palo Alto, California in 1972. He served as a missionary for the LDS Church in Taiwan. He received a bachelor's degree from BYU and then was a Rhodes Scholar, receiving both his master's degree and D.Phil. from Oxford University.[4] Gong was a professor at various times at Georgetown University and Johns Hopkins University. He later served as a special assistant in the United States State Department as well as in the United States Embassy in China. He also served as China Chair and Asia Director of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Even before joining the administration at BYU, Gong was involved in educational policy issues. He served as a member of the United States Department of Education's National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity and participated in multiple National education summits.[5]

Gong is married to Susan Lindsay, a daughter of Richard P. Lindsay. They first met when Gong was a BYU student who would give presentations on Taiwan's culture to missionaries in the Missionary Training Center about to depart for Taiwan, among whom was Lindsay. However this was only a brief meeting. They began dating a few years later, in the summer when Gong had returned from Oxford to spend a few weeks with his parents, during a time his father was a professor at BYU. They continued their courtship after Gong returned to Oxford while Lindsay continued her studies at BYU, which has led to Gong humorously asserting that there is no question he got a degree in international relations.[6] The Gongs married in the Salt Lake Temple on January 2, 1980 and are the parents of four sons.[7]

Prior to becoming a general authority, Gong served in the church as a bishop, stake president, and area seventy. After his call to the First Quorum of the Seventy, he served as a counselor in the church's Asia Area from 2011 to 2013,[8][9] then as the area's president since August 2013.[10][11]

Gong is the author of the book Memory and History in East and Southeast Asia.


  1. ^ Scott Taylor, "Mormon church names new seventies, Primary presidency", Deseret News, 2010-04-04
  2. ^ *Hill, Greg (May 1, 2010), "Elder Gerrit W. Gong: 'A nice guy' — A man of faith and learning", Church News: 11 
  3. ^ “Elder Gerrit W. Gong,” Liahona, May 2010, p. 140
  4. ^ Summer 2010 Edition of BYU Studies
  5. ^ BYU Studies, Vol. 49, no. 2, p. 10
  6. ^ BYU Studies, vol. 49, no. 2, p. 7
  7. ^[dead link]
  8. ^ "Area Leadership Assignments, 2011", Church News, 29 April 2011. Retrieved 17 May 2014.
  9. ^ "Area Leadership Assignments, 2012", Church News, 5 May 2012. Retrieved 17 May 2014.
  10. ^ "Area Leadership Assignments, 2013", Church News, 25 May 2013. Retrieved 17 May 2014.
  11. ^ "Area Leadership Assignments, 2014" Church News, 3 May 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2014.

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