NFDA Introduces the 2022 Meet the Mentors Program Participants

DISCOVER Funeral Industry News Funeral Industry Press Releases NFDA June 13, 2022
Meet the Mentors

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NFDA Introduces the 2022 Meet the Mentors Program Participants

Brookfield, Wis. – The National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) is proud to introduce the funeral professionals who have been selected to participate in the 2022 Meet the Mentors program. The program, which has been wholly funded by the Funeral Service Foundation since its inception in 2011, will take place August 14-16 at the Emory Conference Center Hotel, located on the campus of Emory University, in Atlanta, Georgia.

The 2022 NFDA Meet the Mentors participants are:  

·         Jessica Woltring, Wenig Funeral Home, Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin

·         David Andrzejewski, Howe-Peterson FuneralHome, Dearborn, Michigan

·         Josh Austin, Cozine Memorial Group, Wichita, Kansas

·         Jordan Baker, Saunders-Dwyer Home for Funerals, New Bedford, Massachusetts

·         Jessica Bowen, Spry Funeral Home, Huntsville, Alabama

·         Nicole Brown, Davenport & Harris Funeral Homes Inc., Birmingham, Alabama

·         April Callahan, Preble Memory Gardens Funeral Center, West Alexandria, Ohio

·         Hannah Chambers, Smith Family Funeral Homes – North Little Rock, North Little Rock, Arkansas

·         Katie Clapp, Anthony Funeral Homes, Akron, Ohio

·         Greg Counsell, Counsell Woodley Funeral Home & Monument Company, Hampton, Iowa

·         Emily Grace Crowe, Williamson Memorial Funeral Home, Franklin, Tennessee

·         Brockton Elkins, Dyersburg Funeral Home, Dyersburg, Tennessee

·         Skyler Gunderson, Gunderson Funeral Home, Mount Horeb, Wisconsin

·         Brooke Hassig, Chas. Verheyden Inc., Grosse Pointe, Michigan

·         Kelsey Hickman, Dwayne R. Spence Funeral Home, Canal Winchester, Ohio

·         Jami John, Vertin Family Funeral Homes, Breckenridge, Minnesota

·         Paul Johnson, Heritage Funeral Homes, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

·         Carl Kirby, Gaines Funeral Home, Cleveland, Ohio

·         Alexandra Lazaruik, Park Memorial Ltd., Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

·         Joseph Mask, Radney Funeral Home, Alexander City, Alabama

·         John McCaig, Brunswick Memorial Home, East Brunswick, New Jersey

·         Andrew Merschman, Counsell Woodley Funeral Home, Hampton, Iowa

·         Larry Moore, Moore Funeral Home, Trenton, Georgia

·         Jacob Morris, West Harpeth Funeral Home & Crematory, Nashville, Tennessee

·         Meghan Reithel, Nie Family Funeral Home, Ann Arbor, Michigan

·         Kellie Rogers, Hughes Family Tribute Center, Dallas, Texas

·         Brienna Smith, Return Home, Auburn, Washington

·         Joe Strednak, Patrick T. Lanigan Funeral Home and Crematory Inc., East Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

·         Evelester Vargas, Logan Square Funeral Home, Chicago, Illinois

·         Mykal Walden, Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home, St. Petersburg, Florida

About Meet the Mentors

Three highly esteemed funeral professionals have been selected as the 2022 mentors: Sam James, the owner of James Funeral Home and Northlake Memorial Gardens in Huntersville, North Carolina; Ginny Sanzo, CFSP, managing partner of the John E. Day Funeral Home in Red Bank, New Jersey; and Tom Sproles, CFSP, co-owner of Sproles Family Funeral Home in New Castle, Indiana.

During Meet the Mentors, the mentors will share career advice and lessons they have learned while building their careers in the funeral service profession. Attendees, who are all either under the age of 40 or new to the profession (first licensed within the last five years), will be able to connect with the mentors and their fellow mentees during small group discussions, interactive exercises and meals.

There is no cost to participate in the Meet the Mentors program itself. The Funeral Service Foundation’s generous grant provides exclusive, career-transforming access to three mentors, and covers attendees’ registration fees, two nights’ lodging and select meals. The individuals selected to attend only pay for their transportation to the program.

More than 600 young professionals and budding leaders have benefited from the Meet the Mentors program, which underscores the Foundation’s mission of investing in people and programs to strengthen funeral service and lift up grieving communities.

Complete details about the NFDA Meet the Mentors program can be found on the NFDA website,

NFDA is the world’s leading and largest funeral service association, serving more than 20,000 individual members who represent nearly 11,000 funeral homes in the United States and 49 countries around the world. NFDA is the trusted leader, beacon for ethics and the strongest advocate for the profession. NFDA is the association of choice because it offers funeral professionals comprehensive educational resources, tools to manage successful businesses, guidance to become pillars in their communities and the expertise to foster future generations of funeral professionals. NFDA is headquartered in Brookfield, Wis., and has an office in Washington, D.C. For more information, visit