L. Whitney Clayton

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L. Whitney Clayton
L. Whitney Clayton (42285050675).jpg
Emeritus General Authority
October 3, 2020 (2020-10-03)
First Quorum of the Seventy
March 31, 2001 (2001-03-31) – October 3, 2020 (2020-10-03)
Called byGordon B. Hinckley
Presidency of the Seventy
April 5, 2008 (2008-04-05) – August 1, 2020 (2020-08-01)
Called byThomas S. Monson
Personal details
BornLyndon Whitney Clayton III
(1950-02-24) February 24, 1950 (age 71)
Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
Spouse(s)Kathy Ann Kipp

Lyndon Whitney Clayton III (born February 24, 1950) has been a general authority of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) since 2001. He became a member of the church's Presidency of the Seventy in 2008 and was its senior president from 2015 until 2020.[1]


Clayton was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, and attended the University of Utah. He served as a full-time missionary of the LDS Church in Peru. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in finance and earned a law degree at the University of the Pacific.[2] Clayton was a partner in the Newport Beach, California–based law firm of Call, Clayton and Jensen.[3] He was with this law firm from 1981 to 2001.[4]

Clayton married Kathy Ann Kipp in the Salt Lake Temple on August 3, 1973, and they are the parents of seven children.

LDS Church service[edit]

Clayton served previously in the LDS Church as a bishop, stake high councilor, counselor in a mission presidency, regional representative, and area seventy. At the time of his call as an area seventy, the Claytons lived in Irvine, California.[5]

Clayton was called as a general authority and member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in 2001. Previous assignments as a general authority have included serving as both a counselor and as president of the church's South America South Area and as an Assistant Executive Director of the Family and Church History Department. When Clayton was called to the Presidency of the Seventy on April 5, 2008,[2][6] he was assigned supervisory responsibility for the church's North America West and North America Northwest areas.[7][8] From 2012 to 2015, he supervised the church's work in the three geographical areas within Utah.[9] In August 2015, Clayton presided at the groundbreaking of the church's Cedar City Utah Temple.[10]

As the LDS Church received criticism for alleged sexual abuse of boys in the church's scouting units, dating back decades but made public by allegations in 2015, Clayton commented on the church's ongoing efforts to prevent child abuse within its programs.[11]

From October 2015 to August 2020,[12] Clayton was the senior, or presiding, member of the Presidency of the Seventy.[13][14][6][15] He filled the position previously held by Ronald A. Rasband, who was called to serve in the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. He was designated as an emeritus general authority in October 2020.[16]

In April 2016, Clayton's brother, Weatherford T. Clayton, was sustained as a general authority.[17]

Clayton has been a speaker at a number of religious events or forums, frequently speaking on religious freedom.[18][19]


  1. ^ "Elder L. Whitney Clayton". ChurchofJesusChrist.org. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  2. ^ a b "L. Whitney Clayton". Grampa Bill.
  3. ^ New General Authorities: He learned priceless lessons of family, hard work and prayer, Church News, 14 April 2001
  4. ^ "Clayton, L. Whitney". rsc.byu.edu. BYU Religious Studies Center. Retrieved 27 March 2019. |BYU Religious Studies Center biography of Clayton]
  5. ^ Church names Area Authorities, Church News, 5 August 1995.
  6. ^ a b Noyce, David. "Mormon church names two more officials — Utahn and an Asian-American — to high positions". sltrib.com. Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 28 March 2019.
  7. ^ "New Area Leadership Assignments", Ensign, August 2008, pp. 78–79.
  8. ^ Pugmire, Genelle. "LDS Church makes changes in Presidency of Quorum of Seventy". heraldextra.org. The Daily Herald. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  9. ^ First Presidency Announces Changes, Church News archives, 11 February 2012.
  10. ^ Passey, Brian. "LDS Church breaks ground for Cedar City Temple". thespectrum.com. The Spectrum. Retrieved 31 March 2019.
  11. ^ Zamost, Scott; Phillips, Kyra. "LDS Church: No tolerance for sex abuse in scouting". cnn.com. CNN. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  12. ^ See the Church’s new 2020 leadership assignments around the world, Church News, 16 April 2020. Retrieved 20 May 2020.
  13. ^ "Leadership Changes in Presidency of the Seventy Announced", Newsroom, LDS Church, 2015-10-06
  14. ^ Morgenegg, Ryan (12 November 2015). "Changes announced for Area Presidencies". Church News.
  15. ^ Church Announces 2016 Area Leadership Assignments, churchofjesuschrist.org, 29 April 2016. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  16. ^ "Leadership Changes Announced at the October 2020 General Conference: New calls announced for one General Authority Seventy, two members of the Presiding Bishopric and four Area Seventies", Newsroom, LDS Church, 2020-10-03
  17. ^ "Weatherford T. Clayton: Loving the Lord and His people", Church News, Deseret News, 2016-05-05
  18. ^ Nielsen, Liesl. "Shutterstock Religious beliefs deserve as much protection as race and gender, LDS leader says". ksl.com. KSL. Retrieved 25 March 2019.
  19. ^ Mortensen, Lori. "Second conference on religious freedom set for March 19". mtdemocrat.com. Mountain Democrat. Retrieved 25 March 2019.


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