Pop Quiz

Quick, off the top of your head, name 7 General Relief Society Presidents.  Name 5 General Young Women’s Presidents.  Name 3 General Primary Presidents.


  1. Steve Evans says:

    This is tougher than smb’s previous friday brain teaser.

  2. Can’t do it.

    On a happier note, I tried something similar with my Seminary class last night. Alas, we all failed, but next week they have to tell me who the RS general presidency are, and something about them.

  3. The RS Presidents I can do. I have three of the YL/YW and one Primary President. I may be more culpable than the some Saints, though, because I think many might struggle to name the current quorum of the Twelve or past Presidents of the Church, which are much more prominent in contemporary discourse.

  4. Honestly, I can’t. I just tried to list every female leader who’s name I could remember, and I came up with about 7 people total, (one of whom, Beverly Peterson, was just a figment of my imagination as far as I can tell- I was probaby thinking of Bonnie Parkin).

  5. I can name 3 RS presidents… Smith, Wells, and Snow. Nothing on the others.

  6. a random John says:

    Does “nobody for 20 years” in the #2 spot count as one of the RS Presidents? Because that would really help my list.

  7. I’m curious– how many women here remember Chieko Okazaki? She was in the presidency with, um, Elaine Jack (had to search memory for that name) and Aileen Clyde. She was not president however, so wouldn’t count for the question. Would the men have known who she is?

    And for the men– do most men know who Sheri Dew is?

    I can do 7 RS presidents, but no YW pres. Only one primary pres– the very first, well, unless that wasn’t actually her title.

  8. Kevin Barney says:

    I can’t do it. I can get close on the RS Presidents (but not to 7); the others I draw a total blank on.

  9. Relief Society –
    Wells, Parkin, Brown, Parmlee, Spafford, and 3 Smiths – Bathsheba, Eliza R. S., and Barbara.

    YW –
    Kapp, Nadauld, Pearce, Tanner, and ________

    Primary –
    Grassli, Rogers, Pinegar

    I named 8 RS presidents to make up for the YW president I missed.

  10. Paula, my guess is that Okazaki and Dew are more visible than the presidents they served with to the men in the church as well as the women.

  11. Sorry Mark, but there is no Parmlee in the RS Presidency and Sister Pearce was the first counselor in the YW Presidency. I can do all of this except for the YW Presidency — I only got 3.

    This was a good exercise Kristine.

  12. I should add though that Mark should get extra points for naming a counselor and an extra Primary President — I think that’s what Sister Parmlee was the president of.

  13. a random John says:

    Is Mark IV just showing off by not listing the most obvious RS President?

  14. Huh – I would have sworn on a bible that sister Pearce was a YW pres., but I’ll take your word for it, kris. Also, I can’t believe I missed the most obvious one – Emma H. Smith as first RS president.

    And thanks for the extra points. I hear Sister HH is an easy grader who grades on the curve, so that puts you and me at the head of the class, right?

    I should also add that, beyond the names, I know almost nothing about these women or their administrations. I know sister Kapp had no children. I know sister Grassli was an enthusiastic supporter of the cub scouts, because I saw her once wearing her gold and navy blue “den mother” uniform. I’ve heard the story about A. S. Rogers and the beginning of the primary. Beyond that, I’m completely ignorant.

  15. Scheherazade says:




    (forgetting two right now)


    (I always think that Pat Holland was YW president, but I’m wrong about this as I recall)


    May (2)
    M. Grassli
    Colleen Menlove

  16. Scheherazade says:

    Whoops. Didn’t mean to double up on Elaine (there was only one). Still she had a huge influence on me so maybe my mistake has some meaning . . .

  17. #11 Mark, I think you’re right, but I’m wondering how many even remember Okazaki, who’s probably the most memorable member of the RS pres. except for Dew in the last 50 years or more. And I’m curious about the male reaction to Dew– she’s very well-known among women, but I’m not sure among men. I asked my husband who she was by name, and he said, huh? So I had to describe her. But he’s not particularly interested keeping track of the names of the men either.

  18. arJ, # 14,

    OF COURSE I’m a show-off! Aren’t you just begging the question? :-)

  19. a random John says:

    I remember Chieko, but it probably helps that she stops by the house occasionally.

  20. I couldn’t even name my ward’s relief society president right now, let alone who is the General RSP.

  21. I remember Chieko and Sherri Dew because I’ve read some books they wrote.

  22. GRSP

    Emma Smith, Bathsheba Smith, Eliza Snow, Bonnie Parkin, Barbara something or other was RS pres in the 70s and was for a long time, and before Bonnie, it was that lady with the big afro who had Sheri Dew as a councilor… (That’s 6…Was Elaine Cannon in RS or YW?)

    GPP Colleen Menlove is in charge right now. That’s all I’ve got.

    I could name a Young Women’s President if I were married to her..

    Kristine, without looking, name 7 Presiding Bishops, and 3 Sunday School presidents, and 5 female astronauts…

  23. I could do 7 Presiding Bishops.

  24. Um, many single adult men in the church know of Sister Dew.

  25. RS — Elaine Jack, Amy Brown Lyman, Belle Spafford, Emma Smith, Eliza R. Snow Smith (Young), Zina, Emmeline B. Wells

    YW — Ardeth Kapp, Elaine Cannon, Margaret Nadauld, Janette Hales Beckham, Susan Tanner

    P — Aurelia Spencer Rogers, Louie B. Felt, Dwan J. Young

    Hey, how about we create a song to remember the RS presidents’ names — like the Primary song that lists all 15 presidents of the church? Seriously.

    I can never get enough of the Jack trio: Elaine Jack(literacy), Chieko Okazaki (anti-sexist/anti-racist), Aileen Clyde (feminist).

  26. I cheated and read all the comments before trying to remember any, and now I’ve got some familiar names floating in my head. But I have to confess that if I’d tried to do this cold, I wouldn’t have come up with much.

    Also, I agree with Joanne; the Jack, Okazaki, and Clyde RS presidency was awesome.

  27. Matt W. stole my idea by having it first. But instead of including female astronauts for some reason, how about this challenge?

    Name 7 Presidents of the Seventy, 5 Presiding Bishops, and 3 General Sunday School Presidents.

    (I can’t do this one, either. But that’s because I have taken a sacred vow to not care or pay attention.)

  28. Is the point that we are remiss and should remember more of these great women? Or is the point that the actual influence of the current day women leaders is so marginal that it makes sense that we don’t remember very many?

  29. jessawhy says:

    Interesting that Scheherazade used first names . . .
    It seems more in the pattern of the church to use last names, although that certainly depends on the ward.
    The women are called “Sister Menlove” not “President Menlove” in General Conference, though.

  30. #25, Bookslinger, I think I know what you’re referring to. :) I was asking because I’ve been surprised by how many women seem to kind of worship Sheri Dew. (Many aren’t aware of that talk.) I think a lot of women would say she’s been influential and a role model for the women of the church, but I wonder if the men are even aware enough of the RS to know who she is.

  31. Marjorie Conder says:

    RS—-Emma Smith, Eliza R. Snow, Zina DH Young, Bathsheba Smith, Emmeline Wells, Clarrisa Williams, Amy Brown Lyman, Belle Spafford, Barbara Smith, Barbara Winder, Elaine Jack, —–Smoot, Bonnie Parkin.

    YW—–Elmira Taylor, Elaine Cannon, Ruth May Fox, Ruth Funk, Ardeth Kapp, Susan Tanner

    Primary–Aurelia Rogers, Louie Felt, Michelline Grassli (sp–oh, my!)Colleen Menlove, ——-Lunt

  32. Can anyone name 3 YM presidents? 3 presiding bishops? 3 general sunday school presidents?

  33. Scheherazade says:


    Calling women by their first names is a deliberate feminist choice. I do not think of Elaine as “Sister Jack” (someone who’s identity, even symbolically, is subsumed under or bound to her husband). Likewise,Sheri is not first and foremost Dew’s daughter and Pat is not just Holland’s wife.

    But this isn’t just a gender issue. First names are also more intimate and personal. Male LDS historian refer to JS as “Joseph.” Those who aren’t LDS call JS “Smith.”

  34. There’s only one each:

    Lavern Parmley
    Susan Winder (Tanner)
    Belle Spafford

    The outer two were “presidents for life” when I was a kid, and Susan Winder was a freshman at BYU the same year I was, and I almost once mustered up the courage to ask her out. Almost.

  35. I knew one of Sis. Jack’s sons and two of the Okazaki boys. How much credit do I get for that?

  36. I really hate Meridian.

    I’m with arJ. So many ads. For ridiculous ads that make me embarrassed for the Mormon marketplace.

    Then there’s the whole women in the kitchen series that really gets me angry.


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