In this How I Lead interview we talk with Tommy Haws who is a stake president in the Gallup, New Mexico area. His stake covers 10,000 square miles! He presides over 5 wards and 7 branches that meet in 11 buildings. President Haws has years of leadership experience, serving as elders quorum president 3 times, a councilor in a stake presidency, and then a bishop before he was asked to serve as the stake president.

We first discuss the unique challenges he faces with a ward so large and with so many units. We talk about the native-american branches and his approach to unity  a stake with such diversity.

President Haws’ 5 Leadership Principles:

  1. “True Doctrine, understood, changes attitudes and behaviors”– Boyd K. Packer. (“Little Children”, Ensign, Nov. 1986, 17)
  2. “Teaching is the very essence of Leadership in the Church” – Gordon B. Hinckley (As quoted by Jeffery R. Holland, “A Teacher Come from God”, Ensign May 1998) Quote continues, “ Eternal life,” President Hinckley continued, “will come only as men and women are taught with such effectiveness that they change and discipline their lives. They cannot be coerced into righteousness or into heaven. They must be led, and that means teaching.”
  3. Councils are to be revelatory, not just administrative meetings (see 2010 World Wide Leadership Training – particularly comments by Elder Bednar “If I had the wish of my heart, I would remove from the vocabulary of the Latter-day Saints the word meeting. We have not been talking about a ward council meeting. We’ve been talking about a revelatory experience with the members of the ward council. And if members of councils, if members of families, as they come together, would think in terms of “I’m preparing to participate in a revelatory experience with my family” instead of going to a meeting—a revelatory experience with the members of the ward council—I think we would prepare and act much differently.”
  4. Priesthood keys have real power and are meant to bless lives (D&C 65)
  5. Have no personal agenda- follow prophetic priorities (see Quentin L Cook, Priesthood session April 2008 General Conference, and Richard Hinckley in BYU devotional address)


Elder Bednar’s Book Series

“Your Work is Not Yet Finished” – Elder Glenn L. Pace

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