As a young girl, Elaine Schwartz Dalton found great joy in dancing. But as a young mother with six children, she found that dancing seemed impractical, so she started running as a way to enjoy movement each day. At first she would run 10 steps and then walk 10 steps until she could run a mile. Since that modest start, she has run 18 marathons.
“Running gives me a time to be still in my mind and contemplate life,” says Sister Dalton. It’s one hour when she can think about the scriptures she has just read.
Sister Dalton was born in Ogden, Utah, USA, on November 1, 1946, to Melvin Leo Schwartz and Emma Martin Schwartz. She married Stephen Eugene Dalton on September 13, 1968, in the Salt Lake Temple. She earned her bachelor’s degree in English from Brigham Young University. She has served on the Young Women general board and as first and second counselor in the Young Women general presidency. She has also served as a stake Young Women president, Laurel adviser, adviser to a young single adult Relief Society, and Relief Society teacher.
As the new Young Women general president, Sister Dalton says, “My key message to the young women of the Church is the same thing they hear from their parents every time they walk out the front door: ‘Remember who you are.’ ”
She hopes to help young women understand that they are daughters of their Heavenly Father, who loves them. “They say that in the Young Women theme every week, but for so many young women, it has not entered their hearts,” Sister Dalton says. “Once a young woman understands that she is a daughter of God, it defines all her other relationships.”
She encourages them to be pure. “One of the major works they have been reserved to perform is temple work,” she says. “No wonder Satan is raging, distracting young women from being worthy. Be pure. There is power in a pure life.”