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Walter F. Gonzalez

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Walter F. González serves in the Presidency of the First Quorum of the Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Elder González was born November 18, 1952, to Fermin and Victoria González, in Uruguay. He grew up in Montevideo, where his parents both taught and practiced Chistian values that would later help him accept the restored Gospel.

"It was at the age of twelve when he first met the missionaries while riding a bus. Noting that the young lad was studying his English lessons, the missionaries engaged him in conversation by asking if he spoke the language. They managed to place a copy of The Book of Mormon with him at the time but it would be six more years before he began to seriously read the book. In an interview with the Ensign (May 2001, p. 105) Elder González reported, "The Book of Mormon has been the key to my conversion. I really love it." He continued, "I knew it was true after just a few pages of First Nephi." [1]

Elder González met his future wife, Zulma Anahir, at a regional church youth conference just a year after his baptism. They were married on February 28, 1975, in Uruguay. Their marriage was solemnized in the Washington D.C. Temple in 1979. The couple have three sons and a daughter.

Elder González enjoyed a multi-faceted and multi-national academic career. He studied law at the Universidad de la Republica in Uruguay before pursuing economic studies at Universidad de la Fraternidad in Argentina. He earned a technician's degree in business administration at the Instituto Tecnico Superior CEMLAD in Equador. And he was awarded a Bachelors Degree by Indiana University after pursuing studies there through distance learning.

Elder González went to work for the Church Educational System (CES) in 1975 and has always loved teaching. On the ecclesiastical side of the Church, he has served in a bishopric and as a stake president. He was ordained a Seventy and called into the fourth Quorum of the Seventy as an Area Authority in 1997. He was still serving in that capacity when he was called to join the ranks of the General Authorities and enter the First Quorum of the Seventy on April 2001. As a Seventy, he has, among other assignments, functioned as Second Counselor in the South America North Area Presidency.

Elder González was called as one of the Seven Presidents of the Seventy on October 6, 2007, replacing Elder Quentin L. Cook, who was called as an Apostle. Elder González was sustained to the Presidency on October 6, 2007 in the 177th Semi-annual General Conference of the Church.

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