IAC News

In Memoriam: Mary Ann Pollei

May 29, 1944 – August 13, 2021

We mourn the passing of IAC member Mary Ann Pollei. We send our condolences to David and the family.

Go to Obituary

IAC Spring Meeting 2018


The 2018 Spring Meeting of the International Advisory Council of the International Center for Law and Religion Studies took place on Thursday, March 29 and Friday, March 30 at the Grand American Hotel in Salt Lake City.

This year’s theme was “Religious Freedom for All: Special Focus on Eastern Europe.” 

This annual meeting is an opportunity for IAC members to review the progress made in the year past and to receive briefings about upcoming activities. 

The Center Mourns the Passing of Longtime Friend and IAC Member Gary Anderson

With grief and grateful memory, the Center notes the passing of Gary Anderson, a longtime friend of the Center and, with his wife, Lynn Fechser Anderson, member of the International Advisory Council. After a beautiful and successful life, including 57 years of marriage to Lynn, Gary passed away May 27, 2017 at age 79, following a long, courageous, and optimistic battle with Lewy Body Disease. Gary graduated from Brigham Young University after serving a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Brazil. He then earned a law degree from the Berkeley Law School. While a partner with a San Francisco law firm, Farella, Braun and Martel, Gary served on the Board of Visitors for the BYU Law School, as chairman of the J. Reuben Clark Law Society for the San Francisco…

IAC Members Visit Morocco to Support 2017 ACLARS Conference

by Sandy Stephenson

Several members of the Center’s International Advisory Council (IAC) attended the Fifth Conference on Law and Religion in Africa, held in Rabat, Morocco, 14-17 May 2017. The conference was a collaboration of the African Consortium of Law and Religion Studies (ACLARS) with the International University of Rabat, the International Center for Law and Religion Studies (ICLRS), and the International Consortium for Law and Religion Studies (ICLARS), Milan, Italy. The subject of the conference was Religion, Law, and Security. 

Following the confence, the IAC members with a few Center administrators took advantage of an enrichment extension. Dr. Jeremy Gunn, Professor of Law and Political Science at the International…

2017 IAC Enrichment Extension to India

by Sandy Stephenson

On January 13 – 22, Center leadership and several members of the International Advisory Council (IAC) attended a religious freedom conference and participated in a tour of various cities in India. The conference was held in Hyderabad 13 – 15 January; the program was entitled, “Peace, Stability, and Sustainable Development: The Role of Religion”. The IAC members were able to listen and learn from academic scholars, government dignitaries, and religious leaders, and found the conference to be enlightening and informative.

Center leaders and IAC members visited many well-known historical sites in Hyderabad…

Elder Wilford W. Andersen Addresses the IAC at the 2017 Spring Meeting

Members of the International Advisory Council met in Salt Lake City at the Grand America Hotel on the 30-31st of March 2017. The event began with a dinner and keynote speaker on Thursday evening. Elder Wilford W. Anderson, a General Authority Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, addressed the audience. Elder Andersen, who has leadership responsibilities for the Middle East/Africa North Area, spoke of the special challenges in that area including the struggles of refugees who have fled the violence. Despite the bleak situation in the Middle East and North Africa, Elder Anderson sounded a hopeful note as he spoke of refugees receiving aid and transitioning to new lives with the help of others. Elder Andersen was a member of the first graduating class of the BYU Law School and has been a long time friend of the Center.&nbsp…

IAC Spring Meeting 2016

by Sandy Stephenson

All International Advisory Council members were invited to attend the 2016 Annual IAC Spring Meeting, which was held Thursday and Friday, March 31 – April 1, 2016 at the Salt Lake Marriott Downtown City Creek. Thursday evening’s keynote speaker was Elder Craig A. Cardon, who was sustained as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy of the LDS Church in 2012. He is currently the Assistant Executive Director in the Priesthood Department. Elder Cardon previously served as president of the Africa West Area. His remarks were primarily focused on the history of the Church in Africa.

Friday’s events included briefings and discussions by the Center’s directors. Cole Durham explained the emerging challenges for religious freedom. Dave Christensen, Chair of the IAC Executive Committee, focused his remarks on the IAC current membership, activities and events involving the IAC, and strategic needs of the Center. The Center’s…

In Remembrance: Olene Walker

By Gary Doxey

The Center lost a dear friend with the passing of Olene S. Walker, former governor of the State of Utah, on November 28, 2015 at the age of 85.

As governor, Olene Walker was a trailblazer. She left a significant legacy that lives on today in the much-praised fiscal discipline of Utah state government, foundational reading programs for school children, healthcare for children, and opportunities for those most in need to obtain housing. Until her passing, she continued to serve on numerous boards both nationally and internationally, where she left her mark as an energetic, common-sense, results-oriented leader focused on bequeathing a better world to the…