Adam S. Bennion

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Adam S. Bennion mormon

Adam S. Bennion served as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1953-1958. He was also a prominent leader in the Latter-day Saint community as an intellectual and educator.

Early Life and Education

Adam S. Bennion was born to Joseph Bennion and Mary Ann Sharp on December 2, 1886, in Taylorsville, Utah Territory. He attended grade school in Taylorsville, and received his higher education at the University of Utah, graduating in 1908 with honors. After teaching at LDS High School in Salt Lake City, he moved to New York with his new bride, Minverva Richards, to receive his Master’s Degree from Columbia University. [1]


Upon his return to Salt Lake in 1912, Bennion became an English teacher at Granite High Schoool. In the same year, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints launched a seminary program, and Bennion was very involved with the implementation and growth of the program.

In 1913 he became the principal of Granite High School. He studied school administration at the University of Chicago during the summer of 1914. He also taught as an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Utah. In 1919 President Heber J. Grant called him to be the Superintendent of Church Schools. He obtained his Doctorate from the University of California in 1927.

His adult life and career also included serving as Director of Personnel, Assistant to the President, and Executive Vice President at the Utah Power and Light company. He also ran for the Senate in 1944, but was defeated by the Democratic candidate. In 1947 he became a director of the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad, a position he held until he passed away in 1958.


Elder Bennion was sustained to the Twelve and ordained an Apostle for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 9, 1953, by President David O. McKay. He served only five years until his death on February 11, 1958.


Elder Bennion wrote several books: The Candle of the Lord (1958); Looking in on Greatness (1935 -- Written for L.D.S. Junior Seminaries); Principles of Teaching (1921); What It Means to Be a Mormon (1917 -- Written for the Deseret Sunday School). [2] Because of his intellectual and spiritual greatness, Elder Bennion was quoted frequently by other general authorities for years after his death.