Please note: General session and workshop access is included with all Full/One Day Convention and Exhibitor Badges. Simply show your badge to gain entry. Expo-only Badges are valid for the exhibit floor only. Visit registration to purchase general session/workshop badges. You must bring both your badge and event ticket for entry into ticketed events.
8 – 9 a.m.
Life Event Planner and Author, Farewell
Could a little country like Ireland have the answer to a truly eco-friendly funeral? Irish wakes, burial and cremation are considered tradition in the Irish funeral culture. Cremation, in the grand scheme of history, is a relatively newcomer to the scene, with just 11% of people in Ireland choosing it. But this will be changing dramatically over the next decade as innovations in eco-friendly alternatives increase. Muldowney examines current eco funeral trends; traditional forms of body disposition, such as burial, cremation and the newer, more eco forms, including resomation, promessa and the Irish innovation of ecolation. Learn how to do an inexpensive, environmentally friendly funeral from start to finish. (1 CE Hour)
Jack E. West
National Account Executive, Federated Insurance Company
Distracted driving is a serious epidemic. With each new mobile device introduced, the potential for behind-the-wheel distractions increases and so does an individual’s exposure to risk. NFDA and Federated Insurance have joined forces to help funeral homes address the concerns of distracted driving within their business and raise awareness in their community through the development of outreach programs. It’s up to each of us to make ending distracted driving a priority. The lives of everyone important to us may depend on it. (1 CE Hour)
Joshua E. Allen, CFSP, CCO
Manager and Co-owner, Allen Funeral Home
Through personal experiences with high-profile, traumatic and abnormal causes of death, Allen uses visual aids to share specific cases and procedures to overcome the challenges with difficult and advanced embalming and restoration cases. He will also share the ROI achieved when embalmers step out of their comfort zone to achieve benefits for families that are beginning the healing process. With a personal connection to each of these specific cases, Allen will share why the heart of the embalmer is a vital tool for confronting today’s challenges of direct cremation. Discover the techniques and everyday products used in achieving an acceptable to exceptional appearance. (1 CE Hour)
Michael J. Watkins, CFSP, CCO
Vice President of Operations and Compliance, The Signature Group
The communication disconnect that often exists in the arrangement conference is at an all-time high. Families are often uniformed, unprepared and struggling to understand the services offered. Opportunities to educate are missed when we lack the right words or fear we’ll sound too “salesy.” The result is a family whose needs have not been met and fewer families taking advantage of your services. With a properly crafted value statement, you can bridge this communication disconnect. The process begins with understanding the value you bring to the family beyond taking care of the deceased. Communicating your personal commitment and proposed value is key to a more productive arrangement conference, helping the family begin to heal and positively impacting your business. (1 CE Hour)
Lacy Robinson, CFSP
NFDA Director of Member Development
Do your nerves get the best of you when answering the question, “How much is cremation?” Are you in need of suggested dialogue to develop the cremation discussion with families? This industry-acclaimed crash course will give you the knowledge to transform a basic cremation phone inquiry into a valuable cremation phone discussion. Robinson will walk you through a very simple, four-step process designed to help funeral directors, pre-arrangement counselors and administrative staff be more effective in responding to cremation phone inquiries. (1 CE Hour)
12 – 12:45 p.m.
Convention Center Ballroom
12 p.m. Doors open for lunch ticket holders
12:30 p.m. Doors open for General Session attendees (no lunch ticket required)
Limited number of lunch tickets ($30 each) available. Onsite purchases must be made before 4 p.m. Monday, October 30. Inquire at registration desk regarding availability.
1 – 2 p.m. General Session
Wednesday, November 1
12:45 - 2 p.m.
Dallas Cowboys Hall of Fame Quarterback
7NewsBoston Weekend Sports Anchor
Three-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback Troy Aikman has harnessed the drive and dedication that defined his football career with the Dallas Cowboys into numerous successful business ventures since retiring from the game. Through broadcasting, real estate and The Troy Aikman Foundation, he discovered ways to keep himself occupied in “retirement.”
After leaving the playing field, Aikman joined the NFL on FOX full time as a game analyst. He quickly displayed the accuracy and work ethic that marked his playing career and moved up to FOX’s number-one broadcast crew prior to the 2002 season. He’s received three Emmy nominations for his broadcasting efforts and has broadcast three Super Bowls (XXXIX, XLII and XLV).
During Aikman’s 12-year playing career, he set 45 Cowboys passing records and was voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in February 2006. Witness Aikman’s natural leadership ability, innate talent and charisma during this engaging general session, in which he will share how you can develop your inner champion.
As always, General Sessions are included with your full or one-day Convention registration. Add lunch (12 – 1 p.m.) and preferred seating for this session to your registration for just $25! ($30 after September 22).
2:15 – 4:15 p.m.
Jeffrey Chancellor, CFSP
Director of Education, Training and Research, H.S. Eckels & Company
How do you empower funeral professionals to create pathways for embalming excellence? A good way is to implement innovative procedures for employee development while fostering an environment of creativity, safety and customer service. Chancellor will present an entertaining examination of the clinical care process, along with time and fiscal management strategies, and will pay special attention to achieving excellence in presentation, workplace health, safety and environmental stewardship. Learn how to use specialty equipment and (brand-neutral) supplies to improve embalming outcomes. (2 CE Hours)
Katherine P. Kelley
Supervisory Special Agent, Boston FBI
An active shooter is an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area. In most cases, active shooters use firearms, and there is no pattern or method to their selection of victims. Active shooter situations are unpredictable and evolve quickly. Learn what to do if confronted with an active shooter event and prepare staff to respond to potential active shooter situations. (2 CE Hours)
6:30 – 10 p.m. Closing Party
There’s one more chance to party before we say bon voyage to this year’s Convention! Cast off with friends and colleagues aboard the Spirit of Boston for a dinner cruise! Breathtaking views, satisfying beverages and a delicious dinner await as we sail around Boston’s famous harbor. Get your party on as you bust a move on the dance floor or enjoy a stroll on the observation deck. A perfect ending to a great Convention in Boston!
Suggested attire: Cocktail
Price per person: $95 before September 22; $105 after September 22. Includes: 2.5-hour cruise, dinner, full hosted bar, dance floor/DJ.
Transportation: One shuttle will depart the Marriott at 5:45 p.m. and return to the Marriott after the party. A shuttle from the Westin will depart at 6 and 6:30 p.m. and return to the Westin after the party. You may also consider a taxi or Uber. The Spirit of Boston will depart promptly at 7 p.m.
Simultaneous interpretation in Spanish available.
Continuing Education: Sessions and workshops at the 2017 NFDA International Convention & Expo are approved for continuing education by the Academy of Professional Funeral Service Practice (APFSP), most state boards, and by many Canadian provinces. State and province CE approval varies, and it is the individual participant's responsibility to verify approval for CE in the state(s) in which the individual is licensed. Schedule subject to change.