This engaging presentation will explore the genesis and writing of the Church's new official history. Tait and Woodworth will explain why the history of the Church is relevant to the spiritual lives of Church members, and show how the new history draws on the best work of scholars to tell the story of the Church's history. They will also share spiritually meaningful stories from the production of the series and from the Church's history.
Lisa Olsen Tait has been a historian-writer and specialist in women’s history at the Church History Department since 2013. Before that, she taught religion classes at BYU-Provo for three years. Lisa earned a PhD at the University of Houston, studying American Literature and Women’s Studies. Her dissertation was a study of Latter-day Saint women in the 1890s as seen in the Young Woman’s Journal, the monthly magazine of the YLMIA. Lisa has published articles and book chapters on various topics in Mormon history and has given many presentations and interviews in podcasts and other media. Her current projects include a history of the Young Women organization, a biography of Susa Young Gates, and Saints. Lisa also serves as co-chair of the Mormon Women’s History Initiative Team (MWHIT), an independent group that fosters awareness of scholarship and publications in the field. She and her husband Mike live in Highland with their special-needs daughter and two dogs. They also have three sons. When she’s not working, Lisa enjoys exercise, hiking, biking, gardening, and crochet.
Jed Woodworth is a historian employed by the Church History Department in Salt Lake City. He is currently the managing historian of Saints, a multivolume official history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints now in the process of publication. Prior to coming to the Church History Department in 2011, he worked at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he earned a Ph.D. in history. He has additional degrees from BYU and Harvard. Jed is the husband of Shawna Cluff, and together they have six children.