March 28, 1899
December 26, 1973
Years as President:
“I only ask to go where the Lord would have me go, and only to receive what the Lord would have me receive, knowing that more important than sight is the witness that one may have by the witness of the Holy Ghost to his soul that things are so and that Jesus is the Christ, a living personage.”
Harold B. Lee was born on March 28, 1899, in Clifton, Idaho. In Idaho and later in Utah, he developed careers in education, business, and government. As president of the Salt Lake Pioneer Stake of the Church during the Great Depression, he initiated a program of self-help and relief that grew into the Welfare System of the Church. After his call to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in 1941, he continued to work with the Welfare Program, which served needy individuals and communities in many countries. He initiated organizational changes to improve the coordination of efforts at Church headquarters and among all Latter-day Saint congregations. These helped the Church prepare for its rapid expansion of members, activities, and influence of the decades which followed. He became President of the Church on July 7, 1972. As Church President, he traveled often and frequently addressed the youth of the Church. After only 18 months as Church President, Harold B. Lee died on December 26, 1973, in Salt Lake City.