Elder Russell M. Nelson

Elder Russell M. Nelson

Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

Elder Russell M. Nelson was called as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 7, 1984.

Elder Nelson has held numerous positions of responsibility in the Church. He served as stake president of the Bonneville Stake from 1964 to June, 1971, when he was called as general president of the Sunday School. Prior to his call to the Quorum of the Twelve, he was serving as a Regional Representative assigned to the Kearns Utah Region. He had previously served as Regional Representative for Brigham Young University.

An internationally renowned surgeon and medical researcher, Dr. Nelson received his B.A. and M.D. degrees from the University of Utah (1945, 47). Honorary scholastic societies include Phi Beta Kappa and Alpha Omega Alpha. He served his residency in surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston and at the University of Minnesota, where he was awarded his Ph.D. Degree in 1954. He also received honorary degrees of Doctor of Science from Brigham Young University in 1970, Doctor of Medical Science from Utah State University in 1989, and Doctor of Humane Letters from Snow College in 1994.

His professional work included the positions of research professor of surgery and director of the Thoracic Surgery Residency at the University of Utah and chairman of the Division of Thoracic Surgery at LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City.

Born September 9, 1924, Elder Nelson is the son of Marion C. and Edna Anderson Nelson. He and his wife, the former Dantzel White, have ten children, 57 grandchildren, and 82 great-grandchildren.  Sister Nelson passed away in February 2005. In April 2006, he married Wendy L. Watson.