Bruce D. Porter

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Bruce D. Porter was a General Authority of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In April 1995, he was called to serve in the Second Quorum of the Seventy. In 2003, he was sustained as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy. His assignments have included serving in presidencies of the LDS Church's Europe East and Salt Lake City areas. He assisted in coordinating the Church's Middle East/Africa North areas from 2008 to 2014 (administrated from Salt Lake City). He also served on the Church's Area Committee, with responsibility for tracking international issues of interest to the church. He had been president of the church's Europe East Area, centered in Moscow, Russia, since August 2014.

During the 1980s, while a resident in Munich, where he worked for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty as a foreign policy specialist and resided in Munich. While there, he served as president of the Munich Servicemen's Branch.

Porter was born on September 18, 1952, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He attended Brigham Young University with a David O. McKay scholarship, where he earned his bachelor’s degree. He earned his doctoral degree in political science emphasizing Russian affairs from Harvard University. During his education, he spent a summer in the former Soviet Union as an exchange student. He served as a missionary in the Düsseldorf Germany Mission, where he had two native German mission presidents, Walter H. Kindt and Rudolf K. Poecker.

They served as consecutive mission presidents and had served as missionary companions in the immediate postwar period in what became communist East Germany. Kindt and Poecker had both been arrested a number of times by Soviet authorities because of their missionary activities, and Poecker used his time in Russian incarceration to learn the Russian language and tried to teach the doctrines of the church to any Russians he met. The stories that these two men frequently related to the missionaries under their supervision inspired Porter to change his university major to Russian Affairs.[1]

Porter worked on the United States Senate Armed Service Committee and as executive director of the U.S. Board for International Broadcasting. He also worked as an analyst for two years for the Northrop Corporation. He served from 1990 to 1993 as the Bradley Senior Research Fellow at the Olin Institute for Strategic Studies at Harvard University. He then accepted a professorship of political science specializing in Russian politics at Brigham Young University.

He was the author of several books and dozens of articles on Russian foreign policy and international relations. His titles include USSR in Third World Conflicts: Soviet Arms and Diplomacy in Local Wars 1945–1980, Red Armies in Crisis, and War and the Rise of State. He was also the author of The King of Kings, published by Deseret Book.

He and his wife, Susan, were the parents of four children. He passed away on December 28, 2016.