Funeral service professionals from across the nation are gearing up for the highly anticipated 2024 Leadership Conference, hosted by the National Funeral Directors Association from July 29 through August 1. Set against the picturesque backdrop of the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club in Ponte Vedra, Florida, this pivotal event promises a blend of insightful speakers, interactive sessions and unparalleled opportunities to connect with colleagues to elevate leadership skills and advance the funeral service profession through a network of strong state and national associations.

NFDA’s dynamic and enriching speakers will empower attendees with the knowledge, skills and connections needed to navigate the complexities of the funeral service profession.

Renowned lacrosse coach, author and American Ninja Warrior competitor and host, Alex Weber, will ignite the conference with a compelling keynote on unstoppable leadership. Drawing from his diverse experiences, Weber will share actionable insights on achieving peak performance and overcoming challenges with unwavering determination. Attendees will receive a copy of Weber’s book, Fail Proof: Become the Unstoppable You, courtesy of Carriage.

William Pawlucy, a seasoned authority in association management, will lead sessions on governance, volunteer engagement and organizational success. Attendees can expect practical strategies and best practices to optimize their association’s operations and drive impactful change. Attendees will receive a copy of Pawlucy’s book, The Essential Handbook for Nonprofit Leaders, courtesy of Heartland.

Attendees will also hear from Kristina Rose, director of the Office for Victims of Crime at the U.S. Department of Justice, where she oversees programs and services that support crime victims and survivors. Rose will discuss the impact of vicarious trauma on funeral directors and self-care strategies.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s review of formaldehyde is still ongoing. The Agency’s recently released draft risk assessment exempted the use of formaldehyde for embalming, but that doesn’t mean funeral service is out of the woods. NFDA Senior Vice President, Advocacy, Lesley Witter will share the latest information about the review process, the draft risk assessment and the implications for the funeral profession, along with other breaking news impacting the profession.

Adding to the agenda, Tracey Madigan, a veteran news producer and journalist who has worked in television, radio and online news, will empower attendees to effectively communicate their message and navigate media interviews with confidence and poise.

An interactive panel discussion, moderated by Chris Cruger of Foresight in Phoenix, Arizona, will explore the vital topics of recruitment, retention and succession planning. Offering their expertise on the panel are Carmalita March-Harris of March Funeral Homes Inc. in Baltimore, Maryland; Leili McMurrough of Worsham College of Mortuary Science in Wheeling, Illinois; Andrew Allman of the Ohio Funeral Directors Association in Columbus, Ohio; and Jake Johnson of Johnson Consulting Group in Scottsdale, Arizona.

The always popular Breakout by Office session will enable state association leaders to take a deep dive into their unique leadership roles. These breakout sessions will offer a platform for in-depth discussions, peer-to-peer learning, and the exchange of innovative ideas to address pressing challenges and opportunities facing association leaders.

Beyond the enriching sessions, the NFDA Leadership Conference offers ample networking opportunities for attendees to connect with peers, industry leaders and experts. From the complimentary Welcome Reception to the fabulous Closing Party, there is ample time for participants to forge meaningful relationships, explore potential partnerships and exchange insights to drive progress within the funeral service profession.

The NFDA Leadership Conference is approved for up to 10 CE hours by APFSP and most state licensing boards.

Registration is Now Open

Funeral service professionals interested in attending this transformative event can register and find more information at or by calling 800-228-6332 (262-789-1880). Registration includes presentations, handouts, continental breakfasts and the Welcome Reception. When attendees register on or before June 28, they can save $100; registration closes July 18.

As an irresistible addition to the conference experience, attendees have the opportunity to purchase tickets to the exclusive Closing Party on July 31. Set against the tropical backdrop of the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club, this event promises a memorable evening of culinary delights, delectable libations and unforgettable live entertainment. Bid farewell to the 2024 NFDA Leadership Conference in style, surrounded by old and newfound colleagues and friends.

About the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club

A refuge for recreation and reflection, the AAA Five-Diamond rated Ponte Vedra Inn & Club is the picture of quiet grandeur, grace, stateliness and story. Located on a stretch of pristine beach in northeast Florida, discover a world of elevated oceanfront accommodations paired with gracious, attentive service and endless leisure pursuits. Since 1928 generations of vacation memories have been made here, and we’re welcoming you to make your own.

Resort amenities include: full-service luxury spa offering more than 100 services; 36 incredible holes of golf; 10 outstanding dining establishments; state-of-the-art oceanfront fitness center; four heated swimming pools; children’s playground and nursery; miles of beautiful Atlantic Ocean beaches to explore; beach rentals with kayaks, paddle-boards, beach bicycle cruisers and more; an array of boutiques and shops; complimentary Wi-Fi resort wide; and more.

Chose accommodations in the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club or its sister resort, the Lodge & Club Ponte Vedra Beach, which offers the benefit of reciprocal access and complimentary shuttle service, including an adults-only pool area, exceptional oceanside restaurants and lounges and much more.

Rooms may be reserved at in the NFDA block for a discounted rate of $300 per night plus taxes and fees. Rooms must be reserved by June 21.

NFDA thanks the following companies for their support of the 2024 Leadership Conference: ASD – Answering Service for Directors; Byline Bank; Carriage; C & J Financial; Express Funeral Funding; Federated Insurance; Foresight; Heartland; National Guardian Life (NGL); NOMIS Publications Inc.; Ring Ring Marketing; Tribute Technology; and Tukios.

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