680-681: Stephen Urquhart – Former Utah State Senator on LDS Church Influence in the Utah Legislature
December 12, 2016
Stephen Urquhart was raised in Houston, Texas, where he and his family converted to the LDS church after the suicide of his older brother. After serving an LDS mission in Brazil, Steve married Sara Stanley and graduated from BYU Law School — ultimately settling in St. George, Utah.
After developing a successful law career in St. George, Stephen served for 16 years in the Utah State Legislature, representing Washington County. In total, Stephen served 8 years in the Utah House of Representatives, and 8 years in the Utah Senate.
During this vast legislative career, Stephen championed legislation on several issues crucial to Utahns, including: public land use, water rights, death penalty, increasing citizen access to legal services, numerous initiatives to improve K-12 and higher education in Utah, and most recently — anti-discrimination and hate crimes legislation (LGBT), as well as the legalization of medical marijuana.
In this two-part episode, Stephen discusses:
Part 1: His early years in the LDS Church, and his legal and legislative careers in Utah.
Part 2: His experiences and reflections on the powerful influence of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints on the Utah legislative process, and his loss of LDS faith after witnessing the negative impact of LDS LGBT policies on several people close to him.