SALT LAKE CITY – At the Saturday afternoon session of the 171st Semiannual General Conference, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sustained previously announced changes in the Presidency of the Seventy.

New general presidencies of the Young Men and the Sunday School were also announced. Other leadership changes included the release of nine General Authorities, the sustaining of three new Area Authority Seventies and the release of 24 Area Authority Seventies.

Elder Charles Didier and Elder Cecil O. Samuelson Jr. will succeed Elder L. Aldin Porter and Elder Marlin K. Jensen as members of the Presidency of the Quorums of the Seventy. These changes were announced in June. Elder Didier and Elder Samuelson have been serving in their new responsibilities since August. Under the direction of the First Presidency and the Twelve, the Presidency of the Seventy has overall leadership responsibility for the five Quorums of the Seventy, now comprised of 246 members worldwide.

Because of his new assignment in the Europe Central Area Presidency, Elder Marlin K. Jensen was released as general president of the Sunday School along with his counselors, Elder Neil L. Andersen and Elder John H. Groberg. Elder Cecil O. Samuelson Jr. of the Presidency of the Seventy was sustained as the new general president of the Sunday School with John H. Groberg as first counselor and Elder Richard J. Maynes as second counselor.

Now assigned to the Pacific Islands Area Presidency, Elder Robert K. Dellenbach was released as general president of the Young Men along with his counselors, Elder F. Melvin Hammond and Elder John M. Madsen. Elder Hammond, of the First Quorum of the Seventy, was sustained as the new general president of the Young Men with Elder Glenn L. Pace as first counselor and Elder Spencer J. Condie as second counselor.

Five members of the First Quorum of the Seventy were released as General Authorities and given emeritus status. Elder John K. Carmack, Elder Vaughn J. Featherstone, Elder L. Lionel Kendrick, Elder Rex D. Pinegar and Elder L. Aldin Porter received expressions of appreciation for their years of full-time service to the Church.

Also released as General Authorities were four members of the Second Quorum of the Seventy: Elder Richard E. Cook, Elder Wayne M. Hancock, Elder Richard B. Wirthlin and Elder Ray H. Wood.

Released from the First Quorum of the Seventy
Elder John K. Carmack was called as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in April 1984. His service as a General Authority included assignments as president of the Europe West, Asia, North America Northeast, North America West, Utah Central, North America Southeast and North America East areas. When called as a General Authority, Elder Carmack was serving as president of the Idaho Boise Mission. Prior to that time, he had served the Church as a regional representative for four years. An attorney, Elder Carmack was president of a law firm in Los Angeles and president of the Westwood Bar Association. Elder Carmack now serves as the managing director of the new Perpetual Education Fund.

Elder Vaughn J. Featherstone was sustained as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in October 1976. Prior to his calling to the Seventy, he served in the Presiding Bishopric for four years. Elder Featherstone served as a counselor in the Utah North Area and as president of the Australia/New Zealand, Pacific, North America Northeast, North America Southeast, Philippines/Micronesia and Utah South areas. Other assignments included service as general president of the Young Men and president of the Texas San Antonio Mission. Prior to his full-time service for the Church, Elder Featherstone worked in corporate training for a large supermarket chain.

Elder L. Lionel Kendrick was called to the First Quorum of the Seventy in April 1988. He has served as the president of the Dallas Texas Temple, president of the Florida Tampa Mission and president of the Asia North and Philippines Micronesia areas. Elder Kendrick served as a counselor in the Asia North, Utah South, North America Central, North America Southeast and North America Northwest area presidencies. Before his call as a General Authority, Elder Kendrick was a professor of health education and director of the Regional Training Center at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina.

Elder Rex D. Pinegar was called to be a member of the First Council of the Seventy in October 1972. He was later named a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in October 1976. Elder Pinegar’s years of service to the Church include assignments as president of the North America Southwest Area and as a member of the Asia, North America Southeast and North America Southwest area presidencies. For six years, Elder Pinegar served as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy, the last two years as its senior president. He also served as president of the North Carolina-Virginia and Virginia Roanoke missions. An educator by profession, Elder Pinegar was chairman of the education psychology department at Brigham Young University.

Elder L. Aldin Porter was named a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy in April 1991, after serving as a member of the Second Quorum of Seventy for two years. He served as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy from August 1992 through August 2001, the last five years as its senior president. Elder Porter also fulfilled assignments as a member of the presidency of the South America South Area and as president of the Utah South Area. At the time of his calling as a General Authority, Elder Porter was serving as president of the Louisiana Baton Rouge Mission. He has also served as a counselor in the presidency of the Boise Temple and as a regional representative. In his business career, Elder Porter was an executive for a financial planning company.

Released from the Second Quorum of the Seventy
Elder Richard E. Cook was named a member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy in April 1997. He has served as first counselor in the Asia Area Presidency. At the time of his call, he was president of Martell Corporation, a private investment company. In 1992, he retired from Ford Motor Company after 35 years of service. He has been a member of the National Advisory Council at Brigham Young University’s Marriott School since 1973 and has served on the Board of Directors of the BYU Alumni Association. He is a certified public accountant.

Elder Wayne M. Hancock was named a member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy in April 1997. He has served both as a member of the presidency and as president of the Europe East Area Presidency. At the time of his call, he was president of the Utah Provo Mission. He is the former vice president and general counsel of The Dow Chemical Company. He also held previous positions as vice president and general counsel of Dow Chemical Europe and managing director of Dow’s Italian Region, which included Switzerland and Italy.

Elder Richard B. Wirthlin was named a member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy in April 1996. At the time of his call, he was chairman and chief executive officer of Wirthlin Worldwide, a strategic communications and opinion research firm. He was chairman of the Department of Economics at Brigham Young University and has held teaching positions at the University of Utah, University of California-Berkeley and Arizona State University.


Elder Wirthlin has served as a regional representative in northern Virginia.

Elder Ray H. Wood was sustained a member of the Second Quorum of the Seventy in April 1998. He has served as a counselor in the presidency and as president of the Africa Southeast Area. At the time of his call to the Seventy, he had recently retired as director of tax administration for the Church. He had earlier retired as a partner in the San Jose, Calif., office of Peat Marwick Mitchell, an accounting firm. Elder Wood served three years in the U.S. Air Force in the Judge Advocate General Corps.

Area Authority Seventies
Also announced today were the callings of three new Area Authority Seventies. Area Authorities give voluntary Church service in support of Area Presidencies within their assigned geographic areas. Called as Area Authority Seventies: Carlos J. Garcia, 64, Chino, Calif.; R. Randall Huff, 61, Altadena, Calif.; John W. Yardley, 50, Panguitch, Utah.

Released from their service as Area Authority Seventies were Norman C. Boehm, Jess L. Christensen, Dale L. Dransfield, David W. Eka, James E. Griffin, Esteban Guevara, Ronald J. Hammond, Thomas A. Holt, Ernst Husz, Julio H. Jaramillo, Lloyd W. Jones, Seiji Katanuma, J. Grey Larkin, Haruyoshi Nakamura, Karl E. Nelson, Jesús Nieves, Rodrigo Obeso, James S. Olson, Glen A. Overton, William W. Parmley, Steven H. Pond, Michael T. Robinson, Jorge W. Ventura and Craig T. Vincent.