On June 7, at an as-yet-undisclosed location, a group of 15 to 20 women will have the chance to meet, become acquainted with and potentially date a wealthy, Latter-day Saint mystery bachelor.
Drivers on Interstate 15 may have already noticed the billboards in Salt Lake and Utah counties promoting the event, featuring the image of a hand holding out an engagement ring and the words “LDS Millionaire looking for his wife.”
The matchmaking event is real and sincere, said Erin Schurtz, a dating coach who co-created the June 7 meet-and-greet on behalf of a client she declines to identify, but who she says is looking for love.
“This person has tried lots of different avenues and hasn’t been successful yet,” Schurtz said. “He’s a great guy and has so much to offer.”
While Schurtz guarded the bachelor’s identity, she offered a few clues to The Salt Lake Tribune. She said the man is a millionaire, a practicing member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, originally from San Diego, Calif., from a big family, between 30 and 45 years old, and stands 6 feet, 1 inch tall.
The man also reportedly worked in the White House under a previous Republican president, sold his first company at age 26 and is involved in an international charity.
“I would say tall, dark and handsome,” Schurtz said.
In an anonymous email to The Tribune, the mystery man said dating can be particularly challenging in today’s world of social media and reality television. He added that while his peers may have spent their 20s in Provo surrounded by other Latter-day Saints, he was studying hard in an area without many opportunities to date members of the Utah-based faith.
“This gimmick is a sizzling headline designed to create attention and conversation — it signals that I have achieved an ability to provide for a family, but is not designed to signal that I’m looking for a gold digger,” the man wrote. “But if this marketing campaign helps me reach some potential dates who I can get to know better, then it has been a successful campaign.”
As of Monday morning, 326 women had applied to participate in the matchmaking event, Schurtz said. The billboards would stay up for four weeks, she said, with an application deadline of May 31, after which the qualifying women will be notified with the event details.
The event itself will last roughly three hours, Schurtz said, to allow for “quality time” with all the attendees. Afterward, two women will be selected for separate follow-up dates.
Schurtz acknowledged that the format is reminiscent of TV’s “The Bachelor” or other commercialized dating programs. But she was adamant that her efforts are only to aid a client interested in a relationship.
“For sure it was inspired by all of those dating experiments, but we’re not trying to launch a show or do anything like that," she said. “It’s not for entertainment purposes. We’re actually doing it to help him find somebody.”
The application, at ldsmillionairematchmaker.com, is free, as is the event for the women chosen to participate. Applicants are asked to provide photographs, indicate their age, education level, race, height and body type — options include “slender,” “athletic," “average,” “a few extra pounds,” “large” and “petite” — as well as describe what they’re looking for in a romantic partner, their previous relationship history, whether they have a criminal background, their results of a personality color code test and whether they hold a recommend to enter a Latter-day Saint temple.
“It’s not a disqualifier,” Schurtz said of religious affiliation. “He is more concerned about meeting somebody that is a good match for him than about, you know, whether they’re a temple recommend holder. But it would be a plus for him if they were.”
A church spokesman declined to comment for this article.
Schurtz said she has known the bachelor for a long time, working with him as a dating coach. Schurtz also does contract work with The LDS Matchmaker — a dating service that offers one-on-one consultations — and said she approached the company about sponsoring her event under the umbrella of its organization.
“We pre-qualify everyone that we work with to make sure that they’re a good person, that they have good intentions,” she said. “If they’re coming to us, they’re serious about finding someone. It’s not just a passive activity on an app.”