ZCMI met the twentieth century with the same ideals that had always identified its business. The philosophy -- that individual fortunes and private profits should be subservient to the good of the community -- would continue throughout the company's history. Growth became the new byword. In 1961 ZCMI moved to the suburbs with large modern branch stores at the Cottonwood, Valley Fair and University Malls, as well as in Ogden and Logan. ZCMI's 120-year history has seen the store change from a provincial cooperative to a publicly owned and widely respected shareholder entity. Although ZCMI was a publicly owned company with upwards of 1,400 stockholders, its ties to the Mormon Church were still strong. (1)
-- During 1972
(Harold B. Lee) As Church president, he also became chairman of the board for such businesses as Zion's First National Bank, Hotel Utah Corporation, Utah-Idaho Sugar Company, ZCMI, and Bonneville International.
He counseled men against becoming workaholics in their Church assignments: "I find some of our brethren who are engaged in leadership positions justifying their neglect of their families because they say that they are engaged in the Lord's work. I say to them, 'My dear brother, do you realize that the most important part of the Lord's work that you will do is the work that you do within the walls of your own home? That is the most important work of the Lord. Don't get your sense of values mixed up."
His presidency was noted for dramatic changes in Church administration. He emphasized priesthood in youth programs, restructured auxiliary general boards, and created internal and external communication committees for improving the Church's public relations. He is perhaps best remembered for stressing Church programs for the single adult members of the Church: "We are endeavoring to reach those for whom we have had no adequate programs. Man wasn't made for the Church, to paraphrase what the Master said, but the Church was made for man."
Regarding changes in Church policy, he said, "Now brethren of the priesthood, if you knew the processes by which these new programs came into being, you would know that this just didn't come out of a brainstorm, the figment of somebody's imagination; this was done after some of the most soulful praying and discussing that I believe I have ever experienced. We know, and we have announced when it was given that this came from the Lord." (2)
-- During 1988
In 1988 the Mormon Church owned 51 percent of ZCMI's stock. (1)
-- Oct 15, 1999
The Church announces the sale of department chain store ZCMI to May Department Stores Company. (3)
1 - Utah History Encyclopedia: ZCMI, http://www.media.utah.edu/UHE/z/ZCMI.html
2 - Van Wagoner, Richard and Walker, Steven C., A Book of Mormons
3 - The Woodland Institute 'On This Day Historical Database,' http://www.woodlandinstitute.com
LDS History Chronology: Z.C.M.I
Mormon Timeline: Z.C.M.I