Thomas S. Monson
Thomas S. Monson is the First Counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, or Mormon Church. He is known for his excellent memory and his love of poetry, which he frequently quotes in his speeches. He frequently tells personal stories of how the Gospel of Jesus Christ has helped him in his life and those whom he has met.
Thomas S. Monson was born on August 21, 1927 in Salt Lake City. He was compassionate even as a young boy. He found out that one of his friends would be eating only cereal with water for Christmas dinner. He took his two prized rabbits to them and said, “It isn’t turkey, but they will make you a fine Christmas dinner.
He served in the U.S. Navy toward the end of World War II. He was only 17, and the armistice was signed just a few weeks after he joined. Thomas S. Monson served a full year of active duty before returning home.
In 1948, he graduated cum laude from the University of Utah with a degree in business management. In the same year he married Frances Beverly Johnson on October 7, in the Salt Lake Temple. They eventually had three children, two boys and a girl. He continued studying for his graduate degree as he taught at the University of Utah, and later received his MBA from Brigham Young University.
In his career, Thomas S. Monson did well in publishing and printing. He worked on the advertising division of the Deseret News starting in 1948. Then became sales manager of Deseret News Press, then general manager. From 1959 to 1962 Thomas S. Monson served as president of the Canadian Mission of the Mormon Church in Toronto, Canada. He worked in this position until 1963 when he was called to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on October 4, 1963. In 1969 he began service on the National Executive Board of Boy Scouts of America. He has also served on the Utah State Board of Regents, which runs higher education in Utah. In 1981, Thomas S. Monson was asked by President Ronald Reagan to serve on a President’s Task Force for Private Sector Initiatives. He fulfilled his role on the task force until 1982 when it had completed its work.
On November 10, 1985, Elder Monson was called to be the Second Counselor in the First Presidency under President Ezra Taft Benson. On June 5, 1994, he was called to serve as Second Counselor under President Howard W. Hunter. Then, on March 12, 1995 he was called to his current position as First Counselor to President Gordon B. Hinckley. In addition to his responsibilities as First Counselor he also serves as trustee of Brigham Young University and the Church Board of Education. While he is currently serving as First Counselor, he is also the President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, though Boyd K. Packer is serving as acting president. As President of the Quorum, President Monson is next in line to become President of the Mormon Church.