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Henry B. Eyring

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Henry B. Eyring
Second Counselor in the First Presidency
January 14, 2018 (2018-01-14)
Called byRussell M. Nelson
PredecessorDieter F. Uchtdorf
First Counselor in the First Presidency
February 3, 2008 (2008-02-03) – January 2, 2018 (2018-01-02)
Called byThomas S. Monson
PredecessorThomas S. Monson
SuccessorDallin H. Oaks
End reasonDissolution of First Presidency on death of Thomas S. Monson
Second Counselor in the First Presidency
October 6, 2007 (2007-10-06) – January 27, 2008 (2008-01-27)
Called byGordon B. Hinckley
PredecessorJames E. Faust
SuccessorDieter F. Uchtdorf
End reasonDissolution of First Presidency on death of Gordon B. Hinckley
Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
April 1, 1995 (1995-04-01) – October 6, 2007 (2007-10-06)
Called byGordon B. Hinckley
End reasonCalled as Second Counselor in the First Presidency
LDS Church Apostle
April 6, 1995 (1995-04-06)
Called byGordon B. Hinckley
ReasonDeath of Howard W. Hunter; reorganization of First Presidency
First Quorum of the Seventy
October 3, 1992 (1992-10-03) – April 1, 1995 (1995-04-01)
Called byEzra Taft Benson
End reasonCalled to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
First Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric
April 1, 1985 (1985-04-01) – October 3, 1992 (1992-10-03)
Called byRobert D. Hales
PredecessorH. Burke Peterson
SuccessorH. David Burton
Military career
Service/branchUnited States Air Force
RankFirst Lieutenant
Personal details
BornHenry Bennion Eyring
(1933-05-31) May 31, 1933 (age 91)
Princeton, New Jersey, United States
Kathleen Johnson
(m. 1962; d. 2023)
Children6 (including Henry J. Eyring)
ParentsHenry Eyring
Mildred Bennion
Signature of Henry B. Eyring

Henry Bennion Eyring (born May 31, 1933) is an American educational administrator, author, and religious leader. Eyring has been the second counselor to Russell M. Nelson in the First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) since January 14, 2018. Previously, Eyring was the first counselor to Thomas S. Monson in the First Presidency from 2008 until Monson's death on January 2, 2018.[1] Eyring was the second counselor to Gordon B. Hinckley in the First Presidency from October 6, 2007, until Hinckley's death on January 27, 2008.

While he has been a general authority of the church, Eyring has also served in the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, the First Quorum of the Seventy, and the Presiding Bishopric. Eyring has served twice as commissioner of the Church Educational System. Currently, he is the fourth most senior apostle among the ranks of the church.[2]

Early life[edit]

Eyring was born in Princeton, New Jersey, the second child of Henry Eyring, then a professor at Princeton and later the dean of the graduate school at the University of Utah and president of the American Chemical Society, and his wife, Mildred Bennion. His father's sister, Camilla Eyring, married Spencer W. Kimball, making Henry B. the nephew of Kimball, who was the twelfth president of the LDS Church.

He lived in Princeton until his early teenage years. Until the start of World War II they attended LDS meetings at the branch in New Brunswick, New Jersey, but with the gasoline rationing of the war, they received permission to hold meetings in their home, which often had only the Eyring family.[3] As a teenager, Eyring and his family moved to Salt Lake City, where his father took a post at the University of Utah.

Military service and education[edit]

Eyring spent two years in the U.S. Air Force, stationed at Sandia Base in New Mexico. In New Mexico, Eyring served as a district missionary for the LDS Church.[4] Eyring had been in the ROTC at the University of Utah. While in the Air Force, he served as a liaison between military officers and scientists. His main responsibility was to analyze data from weapons tests of nuclear weapons. At the end of the assignment, he gave a report and ended up meeting in person with a collection of several leading generals.[5]

He had previously received a bachelor's degree in physics from the University of Utah. He went on to earn both master's and doctoral degrees in business administration from the Harvard Business School, before embarking on a career in academia. Over the summer after his first year at Harvard, Eyring did an internship with Arthur D. Little as a consultant for Abitibi Power and Paper Company. He did an analysis to study how to improve the process of river logging. His suggestion was to abandon river logging and turn to truck transport of logs, but a combination of not studying the issue deeply enough and having a CEO of the company who had risen through the ranks from being a river logger prevented Eyring's suggestions from being adopted then.[6]

While studying at Harvard, Eyring was heavily influenced by Georges Doriot, who offered Eyring a chance to work with him and Ken Olsen, the founder of Digital Equipment Company. Eyring chose instead to pursue a doctorate in business.[7]

Academic and business career[edit]

In the fall of 1962, Eyring began work as a professor at Stanford University. He finished his doctorate in business in the summer of 1963.[8] That summer, Eyring completed a fellowship with the RAND Corporation.[9] Eyring had married his wife, Kathleen, the summer before he started at Stanford, and they spent their first year of married life moving through various homes his real estate developer father-in-law was in the process of refurbishing. They then spent the next ten years living in the guest house of his in-laws' property.[10]

Among Eyring's associates at Stanford were Roger Sant and Ed Zschau. Eyring worked with Zschau in the founding of the computer company System Industries.[11]

Eyring was an associate professor of business at the Stanford Graduate School of Business from 1962 to 1971.[12] He was also a Sloan Visiting Faculty Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. At MIT, he took multiple courses in human behavior, including courses from Douglas McGregor, who died of a heart attack while Eyring was at MIT, and also Ed Schein and Warren Bennis.[13]

Eyring has served twice as commissioner of church education, from September 1980 to April 1985, and from September 1992 to January 2005, when he was replaced by W. Rolfe Kerr.[14]

LDS Church service[edit]

Eyring while president of Ricks College

Among other callings in the LDS Church, Eyring has served as a regional representative, bishop and member of the Sunday School General Board.[15] Eyring served as an early-morning seminary teacher early in his time as a professor at Stanford University, and as bishop of the Stanford singles ward later on.

Eyring served as president of Ricks College from 1971 to 1977, as a counselor to Presiding Bishop Robert D. Hales from 1985 to 1992, and as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy, from 1992 to 1995.

Following the death of church president Howard W. Hunter, Eyring was sustained as a member of the church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on April 1, 1995 and ordained an apostle later that week.

Eyring was sustained as second counselor in the church's First Presidency on October 6, 2007,[16] filling the vacancy left by the death of James E. Faust, on August 10, 2007. When the First Presidency was reorganized following the death of Gordon B. Hinckley, Eyring was called and set apart as the first counselor on February 3, 2008. The new First Presidency, with Monson as president, was announced on February 4, 2008.[17]

As a member of the First Presidency, Eyring has dedicated the San Salvador El Salvador,[18] Gilbert Arizona,[19] Payson Utah,[20] Indianapolis Indiana,[21] and Philadelphia Pennsylvania Temples[22] where he had also presided at the groundbreaking in 2011[23] as well as rededicating the Buenos Aires Argentina[24] and Mexico City Mexico[25] Temples.

In 2014, after a meeting with Pope Francis,[26][27] Eyring spoke at Humanum, "an International Interreligious Colloquium on The Complementarity of Man and Woman," held in Vatican City.[28][29] It was the first time that a pope and a top LDS general authority ever met.[27]


Eyring and his wife, Kathleen Johnson, met at a YSA meeting held at Rindge, New Hampshire at the Cathedral of the Pines in the spring of 1960. They became further acquainted at a meeting at the LDS Longfellow Park Chapel in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the next summer. Johnson was a native of Palo Alto and was a student at Stanford University. She had previously studied summers at the University of Vienna and University of Paris and was studying at Harvard University the summer she met Eyring. Wilbur Cox, the LDS Church's district president (to whom Eyring was serving as a counselor), made accommodations to facilitate Eyring's dating Johnson.[30] After an intense courtship that first summer, Eyring and Johnson continued courting with her making multiple cross-country airplane trips until they were engaged early in 1961.[31] They were married in the LDS Church's Logan Temple on July 27, 1962, with the ceremony performed by his uncle, Spencer W. Kimball.[32] The couple were married for 61 years until Kathleen's death on October 15, 2023, at the age of 82.[33]

They are the parents of six children (four sons and two daughters).[15] Their sons include Henry J. Eyring, past president of BYU–Idaho (2017 to 2023); and Matthew J. Eyring, the chief strategy innovation officer of Vivint, a home automation company in North America. Eyring is a first cousin once-removed of former Michigan governor George W. Romney; his paternal grandmother was Romney's aunt.


Published works[edit]

  • Eyring, Henry B. (2016). On The Path Home. Deseret Book Company. ISBN 978-1629722535.
  • —— (2013). Choose Higher Ground. Deseret Book Company. ISBN 9781609074630.
  • —— (2006). Because He First Loved Us: A Collection of Discourses. Deseret Book Company. ISBN 1-59038-637-X.
  • —— (2004). To Draw Closer to God: A Collection of Discourses. Deseret Book. ISBN 1-59038-322-2.
  • —— (2003). Go Forth to Serve. Deseret Book. ISBN 1-57008-946-9.
  • —— (2002). Because He First Loved Us. Deseret Book. ISBN 1-57008-924-8.
  • —— (1995). On Becoming a Disciple-Scholar: Lectures presented at the Brigham Young University Honors Program. Discipline and discipleship lecture series. Bookcraft. ISBN 1-57008-198-0.
  • —— (August 1968), "Wise Advice for R and D.", PsycCRITIQUES, 13 (8), Stanford University, Stanford, CA: 398–400, doi:10.1037/009462, ISSN 1554-0138. Database:PsycINFO Electronic, accessed March 12, 2009
  • —— (December 1966). "Some Sources of Uncertainty and Their Consequences in Engineering Design Projects". IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management. EM-13 (4): 167–80. doi:10.1109/tem.1966.6447108.
  • —— (1963). Evaluation of planning models for research and development projects (DBA thesis). [Boston] Graduate School of Business Administration, G.F. Baker Foundation, Harvard University. OCLC 12284394.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "President Thomas S. Monson Dies at Age 90", Newsroom, LDS Church, January 2, 2018
  2. ^ Apostolic seniority is generally understood to include all ordained apostles (including the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Seniority is determined by date of ordination, not by age or other factors. If two apostles are ordained on the same day, the older of the two is typically ordained first. See Succession to the presidency and Heath, Steven H. (Summer 1987). "Notes on Apostolic Succession" (PDF). Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought. 20 (2): 44–56..
  3. ^ Hales, Robert D. (July 2008), "President Henry B. Eyring: Called of God", Ensign: 10
  4. ^ "We Are One", Ensign, May 2013.
  5. ^ Rober I. Eaton and Henry J. Eyring. I Will Lead You Along: The Life of Henry B. Eyring. Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 2013, p. 65-67
  6. ^ Rober I. Eaton and Henry J. Eyring. I Will Lead You Along: The Life of Henry B. Eyring. Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 2013, p. 76-80
  7. ^ Eaton and Eyring, I Will Lead You Along, p. 81-83
  8. ^ Eaton and Eyring, I Will Lead You Along, p. 105
  9. ^ Eaton and Eyrong, I Will Lead You Along, p. 106
  10. ^ Eaton and Eyring, I Will Lead You Along, p. 108
  11. ^ Eaton and Eyring, I Will Lead You Along, p. 112
  12. ^ Dobner, Jennifer (7 October 2007). "President of Mormon Church appoints new adviser". Houston Chronicle. (AP). Archived from the original on 21 May 2011.
  13. ^ I Will Lead You Along, p. 113-115
  14. ^ "Elder W. Rolfe Kerr to Guide Church Educational System", Newsroom, LDS Church, 14 January 2005
  15. ^ a b "President Henry B. Eyring", Organization: General Authorities, retrieved 2014-08-19
  16. ^ "Church President Names New Leaders", Newsroom, LDS Church, 7 October 2007
  17. ^ "Thomas S. Monson Named 16th Church President", Newsroom, LDS Church, 4 February 2008 On January 16, 2018, Eyring was announced as the second counselor to the newly reorganized First Presidency with Nelson as president and Dallin H. Oaks as first counselor.
  18. ^ "San Salvador El Salvador Temple Dedicated", Newsroom, LDS Church, 2011-08-11
  19. ^ "Church Dedicates 142nd Temple", Newsroom [MormonNewsroom.org], LDS Church, 2 March 2014
  20. ^ "Payson Utah Temple Dedicated: The 15th temple in Utah and 146th in the world", Newsroom, LDS Church, 2015-06-07
  21. ^ "President Eyring dedicates temple in the Crossroads of America", Church News, 23 August 2015.
  22. ^ Weaver, Sarah Jane (18 September 2016). "President Eyring dedicates temple in Philadelphia, the place 'where so much began'". Deseret News.
  23. ^ "Church Breaks Ground for Philadelphia Pennsylvania, Trujillo Peru Temples", Newsroom, LDS Church, September 17, 2011
  24. ^ "Buenos Aires Temple Rededicated", Newsroom, LDS Church, 2012-09-10
  25. ^ "Mexico City Temple Is Rededicated", Newsroom, LDS Church, 2015-09-13
  26. ^ Gallagher, Maggie (November 21, 2014). "Rome's Extraordinary Ecumenical Event: What I and others learned from other faiths at a special event on the family". National Review.
  27. ^ a b Stack, Peggy Fletcher (November 17, 2014). "Pope, Mormon leader make history with a handshake". Salt Lake Tribune.
  28. ^ "Transcript: President Eyring Addresses the Vatican Summit on Marriage". Mormon Newsroom, 18 November 2014.
  29. ^ "Humanum | Program". Archived from the original on 2014-11-19. Retrieved 2014-11-19.
  30. ^ Eaton and Eyring, I Will Lead You Along, p. 89-90
  31. ^ Eaton and Eyring, I Will Lead You Along, p. 100
  32. ^ Robert D. Hales, "President Henry B. Eyring: Called of God", Ensign, July 2008, pp. 8–15.
  33. ^ As confirmed here.
  34. ^ Sarah Jane Weaver, "President Eyring Receives Honorary Degree from University of Utah", churchofjesuschrist.org, 11 May 2015.
  35. ^ "President Eyring Tells UVU Graduates to Focus on 'Happiness That Lasts'". 4 May 2017.


External links[edit]

( – transcript: "President Eyring Addresses the Vatican Summit on Marriage". Vatican City: Newsroom (LDS Church). November 18, 2014.)
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints titles
Preceded by Second Counselor in the First Presidency
January 14, 2018 –
Preceded by First Counselor in the First Presidency
February 3, 2008 – January 2, 2018
Succeeded by
Preceded by Second Counselor in the First Presidency
October 6, 2007 – January 27, 2008
Succeeded by
Dieter F. Uchtdorf
Preceded by Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
April 1, 1995 – October 6, 2007
Preceded by First Counselor in the Presiding Bishopric
April 6, 1985 – October 3, 1992
Succeeded by
Academic offices
Preceded by President of Ricks College
1971 – 1977
Succeeded by