Dean M. Davies
Dean Myron Davies was a General Authority of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was sustained as a General Authority Seventy on October 3, 2020, and served until his death on August 31, 2021. He would have been released as a General Authority Seventy at the October 2021 general conference. At the time of his call as a General Authority Seventy, he was released as First Counselor to Bishop Gerald Causse in the Presiding Bishopric where he had served since October 9, 2015. He had previously served as Second Counselor to Bishop Gary E. Stevenson since March 31, 2012.
Although Davies has been a counselor in three bishoprics, a high councilman five times, and a counselor in two stake presidencies, this was his first time as bishop. Other callings have included president of the Puerto Rico San Juan Mission, and president of the Pleasanton, California, and Danville, California, stakes. He served a full time mission in the Uruguay/Paraguay Mission, from 1970 to 1972.
At the time of his calling to the Presiding Bishopric, he was employed by the Church of Jesus Christ as the managing director of the Special Projects Department which oversees real estate, temple design and temple construction. As a member of the Presiding Bishopric, he helped oversee the church’s funds and other assets, its humanitarian work, and the purchase of land for temples as well as their design and construction.
At the time of the announcement of a four-year closure of the Salt Lake Temple, the great pioneer-era temple, an icon of Latter-day Saint faith, "the media had questions: What would happen to the Angel Moroni statue? How would workers support a 187-million-pound temple so they could upgrade the foundation to withstand earthquakes? Would films replace the live endowment sessions?
- During the question-and-answer session after the news conference, one man tried to lift the media’s eyes to a broader vision. You’re missing the big picture, he said. The church had a grander plan for Temple Square. In fact, church leaders’ definition of what that term meant was growing, too, something that remains overlooked by nearly all media and church members.
- “There haven’t been, really, too many questions about the renovation of the plaza to the east,” said Bishop Dean M. Davies, who then was first counselor in the Presiding Bishopric. “That’s a pretty significant effort, also. All I would add on that is that we want to make the plaza area to the east of the temple even more public and friendly. There will be new seating areas and new corridors. It’s something that you ought to contemplate, also. It’s not just the temple, but it includes all the way to State Street. That will be an integral part of this as we tie together Temple Square into one great whole.”
- He already had redefined what Temple Square is, adding an entire city block. But he wasn’t done.
- “Especially, we want to continue to emphasize that this is the Savior’s house and this is his church,” he continued. “And so we will make every effort to introduce some new thematic elements that will help visitors to Salt Lake.
- “We want them,” he finished, “to think of Salt Lake just as easily as they think of Jerusalem or the Vatican as a place where Christianity really has its heart.”
Davies graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Economics from Brigham Young University and completed advanced executive programs at Stanford and Northwestern Universities. He worked in executive positions in real estate investment, construction, and management before becoming employed by the Church of Jesus Christ.
Community service had been a vital part of Elder Davies’ life. He was a member of the San Francisco Mayor's Fiscal Advisory Committee, the Board of Bay Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America, the Board of Directors of Lancaster General Hospital and chairman of the finance committee.
In an article in the Church News, "Prepared to do Great Things," May 26, 2012, Davies said that he hadn’t planned to serve a mission as a young man, but in a dream he helped an unfamiliar silver-haired man and his wife who were having car troubles. In that dream, he understood that if he followed what the couple taught he would be blessed throughout his life. He began preparing for a mission right away.
Some months later, as he stepped off the plane in Montevideo, Uruguay, he recognized President Gardner H. Russell and his wife Dorothy as the couple in his dream. They helped him develop an abiding love of the gospel, and his mission became the anchor of his spiritual development.
He was born in Salt Lake City in 1951 and married Darla James. They have five children and 17 grandchildren.
General Conference Talks
- "Come, Listen to a Prophet's Voice," October 2018
- "The Blessings of Worship," October 2016
- "The Law of the Fast: A Personal Responsibility to Care for the Poor and Needy," October 2014
- "A Sure Foundation," April 2013