NFDA Professional Women's Conference Proves "Everything's Bigger in Texas"

Brookfield, Wis. – The National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) has opened registration for its 2009 Professional Women's Conference. Hosted in Austin, Texas, at the Sheraton Austin Hotel, April 17-19, the Professional Women's Conference promises to give attendees bigger ideas, more captivating conversations and greater networking opportunities with other women in the profession – proving everything really is bigger in Texas.

"NFDA's Professional Women's Conference is truly addicting. It hits the hottest topics in funeral service and gives me a chance to brainstorm with funeral professionals," said Sheri Stahl, CFSP, of The Island Funeral Home and Crematory in Hilton Head, S.C. "Some of the very best ideas I have implemented in our funeral home have come from this event."

Alan Creedy, of Creedy & Company Business Advisors, will kickoff the conference with "Adaptive Strategies of Successful Funeral Homes," a thought-provoking workshop that will explore how today's consumers and changes in deathcare affect funeral directors and their businesses.

In addition to the ever-popular Round Table Discussions, attendees can look forward to "Contemporary Mortuary Cosmetology" presented by Darla Tripoli of The Dodge Company. Intended to look at the big picture of cosmetology, this workshop will challenge long-held theories of mortuary cosmetology and provide information for achieving a more life-like appearance.

Additional workshops offered at this year's conference include:

  • "Suicide: What You Need to Know" – In this informative session, attendees will learn the signs and symptoms of depression and suicide, and how to respond to those who are dealing with death from suicide.
  • "Social Media: How the Newest Communication Fad... Isn't" – Participants will learn about social media sites and how they can be applied to their funeral home as a tool to engage customers and advance business goals.

To benefit other women in funeral service and begin the networking festivities, April 17 is Funeral Service Foundation Fund Day. Attendees will visit three of Texas' finest microbreweries and savor delectable BBQ. Registration for this optional event is $120. A portion of net proceeds from this event are tax-deductible and support the Women in Funeral Service Fund and the Professional Women's Conference Scholarship Fund. Visit for more information on scholarship opportunities for this year's conference.

NFDA's Professional Women's Conference registration fee for NFDA members is $449; $599 for nonmember, licensed funeral directors. Second registrants from the same organization are $399. Registration for mortuary science students is $50. Registration fees increase $50 after March 20. All conference registrations must be made by April 8.

NFDA has arranged for a special room rate of $159 (plus tax) at the Sheraton Austin Hotel. To secure the special room rate, ask for the NFDA Professional Women's Conference room block. Attendees should call 800-325-3535 or visit (click on "Hotel Reservations") to make their reservations. All hotel reservations must be made by March 2.

The 2009 Professional Women's Conference is generously supported by Nomis Publications, Trigard, Homesteaders Life Company, The Dodge Company, Wilbert and Messenger.

NFDA is the world's leading funeral service association, serving 19,000 individual members who represent more than 10,200 funeral homes in the United States and internationally. From its headquarters in Brookfield, Wis., and its Advocacy office in Washington, D.C., NFDA informs, educates and advocates to help members enhance the quality of service they provide to families. For more information, visit