Best Pro-Immigration Mormon Phoenix 2012 - Daryl Williams
Daryl Williams is just about the coolest Mormon in the Valley, and that's saying a lot considering how many adherents of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints there are in this neck of the cacti. Williams is a renowned commercial trial lawyer, a pilot with his own Cessna, a classical pianist, and a wood shop devotee who knows how to whip up a handsome end table lickety-split. But what we find even cooler about Williams is his pro-immigration stance, despite being, as he puts it, just to the right politically of Genghis Khan. A conservative Republican he may be, but he's no nativist. He long has opposed the immigration policies of former state Senator Russell Pearce, and he takes a libertarian, open-market view of the issue in his frequent lectures and his influential "Illegal Immigration: An Essay," which has opened more than a few minds on the subject. Sometimes, LDS members get a bad rap locally, because of people like Pearce, but Williams' humanity and unapologetic championing of new arrivals shows up Pearce as the odd man out.