President George E. Watkins of the New York, New York Stake was impressive as a stake president and also professionally. He was Executive Director of the New York-based Empire State Electric Energy Research Corp. (ESEERCO), an electric-energy R&D consortium established by New York State's electric utilities that serviced NY State and coordinated with power and light utilities nationwide. He also served as a member and chairman of the International Electric Research Exchange.
The most important marriage counsel I heard him give was during a stake priesthood meeting:
“Sometimes I have thought that my wife should think as I do and do what I would do in any given situation. And sometimes I’ve been rather insistent that she did. And that has always been a mistake. Brethren, for your own happiness and the happiness of your family don’t ever do that. Let your wives develop their talents and interests and take full responsibility for their stewardship at home and at church. Brethren, counsel equally with your wives and be happy."
President Watkins was a powerful guy, and smart. And when he talked I paid close attention.
President Watkin’s red-haired wife on occasion wore Kelly green scarves and suits and was as dynamic as he. I couldn’t imagine her being pressed to take a direction she wouldn’t otherwise take on her own.