Esplin was born and raised in Lovell, Wyoming. She holds a bachelor's degree in elementary education from Brigham Young University. In September 1967, she married Max Esplin in the St. George Temple and they are the parents of five children. Esplin has served in the LDS Church as a wardYoung Women president, stakeRelief Society president, and in a ward Primary presidency. From 1997 to 2000, she served with her husband while he was president of the North Carolina Raleigh Mission. Immediately prior to her call to the Primary general presidency she was a member of the Primary general board. In April 2010, she was called as second counselor to Rosemary M. Wixom in the Primary General Presidency. In April 2015, when Jean A. Stevens was released as first counselor due to her husband's call as a mission president, Esplin was appointed as first counselor.
Esplin was released in April 2016, when Wixom was succeeded by Joy D. Jones.