Jeff Burningham is an entrepreneur, founder & chairman of Peak Ventures and Peak Capital Partners, an apartment investment and venture capital firm. He holds an MBA from Brigham Young University, where he started his first tech company, is an active philanthropist, and ran for governor of Utah as an "innovative outsider" in 2020. He also has a podcast called Extraordinary Us. Jeff was called as a young bishop at age 27. He and his wife Sally live in Provo, Utah.

Highlights

3:05 – Introduction: recently ran for Governor of Utah; background is entrepreneurship, started several Utah companies, funded many startup companies. Run for Governor was an “interesting ride”. Came to the race as a newcomer with no background in politics. He remembers Elder Ballard's talk about “good men should stand up” and felt compelled that they should do it. Discusses first debate in St. George.


7:30 – Advice for anyone who might be interested in public service. If no one will step up who isn’t a seasoned politician, what is the point? Friends supported, but also some friends were “not there” and not supportive at all. Be willing to step out and step up. Be proactive, not reactive.


11:50 – Utah is in a massive growth, economy is so strong. He tried to bring fresh perspective to political arena, as a businessman.


With growth in the area, we need good people to step up to serve and help lead the state.


17:10 – First business cleaning carpets and then first tech company while undergraduate at BYU. Entrepreneurship is an accelerated path to learning. He wanted to keep learning and found that it was the path for him. Fall down and fail, and then get up and learn. We all fail but learn from mistakes.


19:30 – Money is not the “root” of all evil if it is done right and providing jobs for families.


20:10 – Shares story of being called as bishop at 27 in a very unique way.


12:15 – Advice for a new bishop: Remember the burdens are not yours; direct members to the Savior. You can be a “repentance coach”, turning them to the Savior to pray and helping to change their hearts and allowing the atonement to work. It is all about the youth, focus on the youth. Have the counselors work with other members so you can focus on the youth.


* Listen

* Don’t pretend to be an expert on something you are not. Everything good and bad that you can imagine is happening in your ward. Don’t pretend to be an expert. Step up and point them to the Savior.

* Be prayerful for and with members

* Find your “go to” readings that you can read together, you can share.


31:43 – During time as bishop, he rarely experienced feeling the “wrath” of God even when dealing with abuse, but he felt love and mercy of God and the Savior. It is not about punishment.


37:05 – Leadership is extra-special stewardship, so your thoughts, your prejudices, etc. don’t become the recipe for a successful ward. The handbook doesn’t cover ministering, love, stewardship, but it covers organization. You are not given a “checklist” for ministering. All leaders and callings are in the same boat; we should not be divided.


41:35 – Atonement is fascinating. Served a mission in Charlotte, North Carolina, and challenged on Bible every day. Had a desire to go to Jerusalem after mission and studied four months there. Had opportunity to study the Atonement in those sacred locations. The Atonement is about healing our hearts, allowing the Savior to make our hearts more like His.


We are saved by the grace of God, and we should embrace the word grace more in our culture.


47:05 – “Bootstrap” mentality: just pull yourself up and go for it. Because of this mentality, we can certainly use it in the workplace, but we cannot “bootstrap” ourselves to Heaven. We cannot do it without God.

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