In the election won by Dennis Gethin 211 clubs voted with 123 votes for Mr Gethin and 88 for JPR Williams.
Dennis Gethin was Secretary of the Welsh Rugby Union for five years from March 1998 to December 2002.
Now aged 63 he became a Welsh Secondary Schools International in 1963 and won two rugby Blues at Cambridge in 1965 and 1966. He played his club rugby as a fullback for Seven Sisters, Swansea, Neath, Cardiff and Glamorgan Wanderers.
After his retirement from the game he became Secretary and later Chairman of the Welsh Academicals and is now a Life Vice President of the club.
He is a qualified solicitor and during his career moved from private practice to local government where he rose to become Chief Executive of Taff Ely Borough Council from 1982 until his retirement in 1996. He is currently a member of the Audience Council for the BBC in Wales.
Mr Gethin beat off competition from the former London Welsh, Bridgend, Wales and British and Irish Lions fullback JPR Williams to win the election, which was called after Mr Griffiths announced he was not standing for re-election to the post.
Dennis Gethin said: "I have been closely involved with Welsh rugby as a player, an administrator and a passionate fan so I am delighted to have been elected President.
"The Presidency is the ultimate honour in Welsh rugby and I look forward with enthusiasm and pride to taking up the role.
"I am determined to use my time in this major ambassadorial role to spread the word far and wide about this great sport of ours and its important place in the hearts and minds of the people of Wales.
"I have enormous respect for JPR Williams and I wish Glanmor Griffiths all the very best for the future following his tenure as President. I would also like to thank everyone who voted for me and I would like to express my particular thanks and wishes of respect to Sir Tasker Watkins and the late Keith Rowlands."
The President is the senior figurehead of Welsh rugby and is empowered to attend all the major decision making meetings within the Union's senior structure.
WRU Chairman David Pickering said: "We are delighted to have secured someone of the calibre of Dennis Gethin as our President elect.
"He had a distinguished playing career and is highly respected off the field for his work in the law, local government and as a rugby administrator.
"Dennis takes over from a President who has spent more than twenty years of his life actively involved in Welsh Rugby and I want to publicly thank Glanmor Griffiths for his work."
Glanmor Griffiths was elected President following the unfortunate death last November of the then President, the former Wales and British Lions player Keith Rowlands.
WRU Group Chief Executive Roger Lewis said: "The Presidency is a very important figurehead for Welsh rugby and Dennis follows in the footsteps of a distinguished and colourful list of individuals. I am confident that Dennis will further the reputation and standing of Wales in the World."
THE PRESIDENT ELECT
The 63 year old former Secretary of the WRU (March 1998 - December 2002) won two Blues at Cambridge University before playing with distinction for his home town club Neath and Cardiff. He joined the WRU after stepping down as Chief Executive of the former Taff Ely Borough Council (1982-1996). He is currently a member of the BBC Audience Council in Wales.
The former Midland Bank Corporate Director (Wales) ended a 19 year association with the WRU in 2003 when he stepped down as chairman of both the WRU and Millennium Stadium plc. The Union's Honorary Treasurer from 1985 he became chairman of the WRU in 1997 and the Millennium Stadium in 1996. Currently President of Ogmore Vale RFC he has represented the WRU on the IRB, Five Nations and Four Home Unions committees and been a board member Rugby Cup Ltd. He was a trustee of the Rugby Charitable Trust between 1985 and 2003.
THE OTHER CANDIDATE IN THE LATEST ELECTION
The 58 year old former London Welsh and Bridgend full back won a then record 55 caps for Wales and played in eight Tests for the British and Irish Lions as they won successive series in New Zealand and South Africa in the seventies. He won three Grand Slams and six Triple Crowns and led his country five times. A former Junior Wimbledon and Welsh Junior tennis champion he is a retired orthopaedic surgeon. Awarded the MBE in 1977 for his services to rugby he is President of Bridgend RFC and patron of Tondu RFC, a club with whom he played for 18 seasons.