Melvin Russell Ballard Jr., an American businessman and revered religious figure, served as the Acting President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) from 2018 until his passing in 2023.
Having been a prominent member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles since 1985, Ballard was acknowledged by the church’s followers as a prophet, seer, and revelator. At the time of his demise, he held the position of the third most senior apostle within the church.
Transitioning into the article, we will delve into the recent passing of Russell Ballard, who succumbed to natural causes linked to old age on November 12, 2023. Beyond exploring the circumstances of his death, we will also address various other topics of interest and expectations surrounding this significant event.
President M. Russell Ballard’s Death: End Of An Era
M. Russell Ballard, a revered leader in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has passed away at 95. His death, confirmed in a church statement, marks the end of a long tenure as the second-ranking member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, playing a vital role in church policies since 1985.
The church tradition dictates that the longest-serving member of the Quorum ascends to the presidency for a smooth transition. Ballard’s journey began as a young missionary, eventually taking on various leadership roles, including bishop and president of the Toronto mission.
He emphasized the importance of familial relationships during crises, drawing from experiences with disaster victims. Recent challenges involving accusations against Tim Ballard, unrelated to M. Russell Ballard, added to the church’s concerns. Born in 1928, M. Russell Ballard is survived by a large family, with funeral arrangements pending.
The selection of his successor, following church customs, will be announced during the biannual conference in April, often chosen from lower-tier leadership councils with diverse backgrounds. Recent appointments to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles have typically comprised accomplished older men with experience outside the church.
Russell Ballard’s Business Journey: From Cars To Entertainment Leadership
In his professional endeavors, Ballard engaged in various enterprises, spanning automotive, real estate, and investments. Initially excelling as the top-selling salesman at his father’s Nash car dealership, he later assumed control of the Ballard Motor Company in 1956 after a hiatus pursuing other business interests. Concurrently, Ballard served in the United States Army Reserve, resigning his commission in 1957 as a First Lieutenant.
During the late 1950s, Ford Motor Company recruited Ballard to be Salt Lake City’s first Edsel car dealer. Despite receiving a clear impression against signing the franchise after prayer, he proceeded, resulting in significant financial loss and a challenging period in his business career.
By 1961, Ballard held the position of president at Keystone Securities Corporation in Salt Lake City. An investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission in 1962 probed allegations of violations of securities laws.
The investigation concluded in 1963, revealing violations by Keystone, primarily attributed to Ballard. The SEC revoked Keystone’s broker-dealer registration due to false statements to the SEC and aiding and abetting in the misrepresentation of relationships.
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A notable aspect of Ballard’s business career was his presidency of the Valley Music Hall in Bountiful, Utah, providing family entertainment. Despite financial challenges, the LDS Church’s subsequent purchase of the building ensured investors recovered their funds.