At a young age, Elder L. Whitney Clayton learned to love work and family. Early every Saturday, his father, a physician, would leave to attend to medical duties. Before he left, he would write on a chalkboard a list of all the chores to be done that day. When he returned he would join his sons and work side by side with them. From his father, Elder Clayton learned a work ethic that has blessed his life.
Elder Clayton’s family also knew that dinner meant family time. “We talked about politics, what was happening at school, the neighborhood, the gospel, and the Church. … It was a wonderful ingredient of growing up.” Having mealtime discussions is a practice he and his wife have followed with their own children.
Elder Clayton was named Senior President of the Seventy on October 6, 2015. He replaces Elder Ronald A. Rasband, who was called to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.
Elder Clayton was sustained as a General Authority Seventy on March 31, 2001. He has served as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy since 2008 and had supervisory responsibility for areas in Utah. He assisted Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in supervising the Africa Southeast and Africa West Areas. He also serves as a member of the Public Affairs Committee. He served as a counselor in the South America South Area Presidency in 2002–2003 and as president during 2003–2006.
Born in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, in 1950, he married Kathy Ann Kipp in 1973, in the Salt Lake Temple. They are the parents of 7 children and the grandparents of 20 grandchildren.
Elder Clayton earned a bachelor’s degree in finance at the University of Utah and a law degree at the University of the Pacific. He was an attorney in California, USA, from 1981 to 2001.
He has served as an Area Seventy, regional representative, mission president’s counselor, high councilor, bishop, stake mission president, and Gospel Doctrine teacher. He served as a full-time missionary in Peru from 1970 to 1971.