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2 called to presidency of the Seventy

The First Presidency has announced the calls of Elders Charles Didier and L. Aldin Porter to the Presidency of the Seventy, effective Aug. 15. The calls were issued in anticipation of the granting of emeritus status in October to two members of the Presidency of the Seventy,

Elders Marion D. Hanks and Robert L. Backman.Both Elder Didier, 56, and Elder Porter, 60, are members of the First Quorum of the Seventy.

Since October 1991, Elder Didier has been a counselor in the presidency of the Utah North Area and is an assistant executive director of the Curriculum Department. Elder Porter has been president of the Utah South Area since October 1989, and is an assistant executive director of the Missionary Department.

In their new assignments in the Presidency of the Seventy, Elder Didier will serve as executive director of the Priesthood Department, and Elder Porter as executive director of the Missionary Department.

Elder Didier was sustained to the First Quorum of the Seventy on Oct. 3, 1975. When he was called to the Seventy, he was serving as a regional representative, and previously served as president of the France/Switzerland Mission from 1970-73. He also served as president of the Liege Branch in Belgium.

He was born Oct. 5, 1935, at Ixelles, Belgium, to Andre and Gabrielle Colpaert Didier. A convert to the Church in 1957, Elder Didier graduated from the University of Liege with a degree in economics and served as an officer in the Belgian Air Force Reserve.

Elder Didier married Lucie Lodomez of Liege on Oct. 14, 1961; they are parents of two sons.

Before he was called into full-time Church service, he worked for the Church's Translation Services and Distribution Center in Frankfurt, Germany, and was manager of the center in Liege. Elder Didier is fluent in five languages: Flemish, French, German, Spanish and English.

Elder Porter, a General Authority for five years, was sustained to the Second Quorum of the Seventy April 1, 1989, when that quorum was created. On April 6, 1991, he was sustained to the First Quorum of the Seventy.

At the time he was called to be a General Authority, Elder Porter was serving as president of the Louisiana Baton Rouge Mission, a position in which he continued serving until July 1987. He previously served as a patriarch in the Meridian Idaho Stake, president of the Boise Idaho North Stake, and as a counselor in the Boise Idaho Temple presidency.

He was born June 30, 1931, in Salt Lake City, a son of J. Lloyd and Revon Hayward Porter. As a young man, he served in the West Central States Mission from 1950-52. He married Shirley Palmer of Houston, Texas, in the Idaho Falls Temple on Feb. 19, 1953. They are parents of six children. A graduate of Brigham Young University, he was an executive with a financial planning company before beginning his full-time service to the Church.

Elder Hanks, 70, has been a General Authority since Oct. 4, 1953, when he was called to the First Council of the Seventy. He has been a member of the Presidency of the Seventy since 1984 and is executive director of the Priesthood Department. He previously served in the Presidency of the Seventy from 1976-80. He was president of the Salt Lake Temple from 1982-85 and president of the British Mission from 1962-64.

Elder Backman, 70, executive director of the Missionary Department, has served in the Presidency of the Seventy since Oct. 6, 1985. He was sustained to the First Quorum of the Seventy April 1, 1978. He was president of the Aaronic Priesthood Mutual Improvement Association from 1972-74, and president of the Young Men from 1979-85. He served as president of the Northwestern States Mission from 1966-69.

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