“First Presidency Honors Retiring Tabernacle Choir Director,” Ensign, Jan. 2000, 76
Following Jerold D. Ottley’s final broadcast conducting the Tabernacle Choir’s Music and the Spoken Word on 17 October, he was honored by the First Presidency in a presentation made by President Thomas S. Monson, First Counselor. Brother Ottley retired in December from 25 years as Tabernacle Choir director, during which he participated in more than 1,250 broadcasts and concerts in 44 nations. His wife, JoAnn Ottley, has also retired as the Tabernacle Choir’s voice coach.
President Monson presented the Ottleys with plaques. In his tribute to the couple, he quoted D&C 25:12: “For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads.” He also spoke about violinist Nicolo Paganini (1782–1840), who after performing with someone else’s violin said, “Before today I thought the music was in the violin; today I learned that the music is in me.”
President Monson continued, “So it is with Jerry, with JoAnn, with the choir, and all who bring to us their gifts of God and their own inward feelings through their music.”