ICCFA Fall Management Conference

Matthews International, Inc. Service Corporation International • StoneMor Partners LP • Batesville Casket Company Carriage Services  Forethought Financial Group, Inc. Precoa • Diocese of Phoenix Catholic Cemeteries & Mortuaries Foundation Partners Group Forest Lawn Memorial-Parks & Mortuaries NGL Insurance Group Regions Trust Buchanan Group Inc. Cold Spring Granite Cypress Lawn • Spring Grove Cemetery & Arboretum Stewart Enterprises, Inc. Aurora Casket Company Cypress Hills Cemetery Guerra & Gutierrez Mortuary Johnson Consulting Group • Merendino Cemetery Care The Signature Group Trigard Morgan Stanley Carrier Mausoleums Construction Co. • Gibraltar Remembrance Services, LLC LP Bronze International, Inc. • Milne Construction Company The Tribute Companies Inc.




The ICCFA invites you to use the following tags via social media. Show your pride by posting it on your website, on various social media outlets, or even use it as your profile picture in the coming weeks
. We look forward to seeing you in Phoenix soon!




Are You Ready to Reinvent Yourself?

In our phone interview with keynoter Jason Jennings, author of the recent best-seller "The Reinventors," he shared something with us: As one of today's top business authors and thought-leaders, he receives more than 1,000 requests to speak each year and accepts only 80.

So why the ICCFA Fall Management Conference?

Jason said he was attracted to this audience because he knows our profession is one that is in major need of reinvention and he felt he could have a real impact.

The rest of our conversation convinced us that yes, indeed, Jason can and will have an impact. He already knows a bit about cemeteries and funeral homes, as Anderson-McQueen Funeral Homes in Florida is one of the companies profiled in his book. During our call, he took the time to further educate himself about many of the challenges that "keep us up at night." And in the coming months, he will be speaking to even more of the profession's owners and executives to research our business.

In short, Jason will not be giving a "canned" speech. He will offer a three-hour presentation filled with real-world ideas on how cemeteries and funeral homes can reinvent themselves to remain relevant and achieve growth. Even better, he will facilitate an exercise in which we will all work together to brainstorm for ways we can apply his six principles of reinvention within our individual companies.

There is no denying the fact that major changes are coming to cemetery and funeral service. The only question is who will be leading that change—consumers, or us? If you are ready to reinvent yourself, join us in October for a conference that could make all the difference for the future of our profession and of your company.

Jake Johnson                                              Anthony Russo
President, Johnson Consulting Group             President & CEO, Cypress Hills Cemetery
Scottsdale, Arizona                                     Brooklyn, New York




Wednesday, October 17

6:30-7:30 p.m.
Welcome Reception

Thursday, October 18

8 a.m.
Continental Breakfast

8:30 a.m.
Program Co-chairs Jake Johnson and Anthony Russo


8:45–11:45 a.m.
Reinvent Yourself: 6 Secrets to Achieving Growth and Remaining Relevant
Jason Jennings

Today's cemeteries and funeral homes need to reinvent themselves if they are to remain relevant and grow. (Yes, grow!)

In his newly released book, "The Reinventors: How Extraordinary Companies Pursue Radical Continuous Change," best-selling author and business consultant Jason Jennings compiles research on more than 100 companies that have successfully reinvented themselves and identifies the keys to pursuing "never-ending radical change."

In this three-hour session, he will share six principles for reinvention and will then facilitate an interactive workshop-style discussion on how these principles can be applied within our profession. It will also encompass a top-to-bottom ruthless review and rebuild of your organization, asking and answering the hardest of questions such as:

  • When are we a candidate for reinvention?
  • What business are we in?
  • What business will we be in?
  • How are we going to get paid for what we do?
  • How do we change everything we do to take advantage of the latest technologies that might not even exist yet?
  • How and when do we start pulling the plug on the things we are doing now?
  • Who stays and has a role and who goes?
  • What are the things we need to do to be relevant?

A workshop like this would cost thousands of dollars IF you could schedule a meeting with Jennings. This session will help you to re-define and reinvent your company to assure its future relevancy.

Among the companies explored in Jennings's latest best-selling book, "The Reinventors," are Starbucks, Smithfield Foods and Southwest Airlines … as well as Anderson-McQueen Funeral Homes. Jennings says a key to Anderson-McQueen's reinvention was defining their destination, when the company came to the realization "that they weren't really in the business of handling bodies but were instead in the business of educating and helping people understand the value of ceremony, ritual and the telling of one's life story."

Jennings is author of the best-selling business books, "It's Not the Big that Eat the Small—It's the Fast that Eat the Slow," "Less is More," "Think Big, Act Small" and "Hit the Ground Running: A Manual for Leaders." He receives more than 1,000 requests to speak each year and agrees to only 80. He chose to accept the ICCFA's invitation to present at the Fall Management Conference because he believes he has something to offer this profession. Don't miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to consult with him about the issues that keep you and your colleagues up at night!

11:45 a.m.–1:30 p.m.
Lunch on Your Own


1:30–4:30 p.m.
Café Collectives

With more than 150 of the most successful cemetery and funeral service professionals in the world convening at one conference, what better opportunity to learn than through a series of small-group, open-discussion sessions? One the most talked-about portions of last year's conference, these facilitated breakouts allow everyone to participate. 

You and your colleagues will rotate through each of the topic areas, sharing, asking questions and brainstorming for breakthrough solutions to everyday challenges. This year's all-new topics:

  • Attracting and Keeping Good People (Moderator: Gino Merendino). It's one of the top issues plaguing this profession: How do you find, attract, train and retain qualified talent? And on a larger scale, how can our profession as a whole encourage more prospective employees to choose this as their career?
  • Delivering a Five-Star Customer Experience (Moderator: Nancy Lohman, CCFE). Our profession has reinvented itself several times over; we are a long way from the furniture sales/ambulance services of old. Today, you do much more than sell caskets and plots. You provide experiences—to the families and to the guests who attend your services and visit your grounds. How can you create "wow" experiences your clients will appreciate and share with their families and friends?
  • Reaching Families through the Web (Moderator, Corey Gaffney). Increasingly, the first stop for today's customer when making purchasing decisions is the Internet. How effective is your company's website in attracting their business and in guiding them through those decisions? Are your social media activities supporting your efforts? Come learn what's working and what's not and where you need to look next for your web strategy.

6:30–7:30 p.m.
Networking Reception

Friday, October 19

8:30–10 a.m.
Government & Legal Affairs Breakfast
Moderators: Irwin Shipper, CCE, and Christine Toson Hentges, CCE

Join us for a plated breakfast (included with your registration) and an interactive discussion of the top legislative and legal issues facing our profession at the federal and state levels.

10–11 a.m.
Café Collectives Recap
Abbie Brammer Quicoho

Based on the discussions during the Thursday afternoon Café Collectives, Abbie Brammer Quiocho will pull together the notes from each of the three groups to share highlights, summaries and takeaways.

11–11:45 a.m.
ICCFA 125th Anniversary Celebration

On October 19, 1887, executives from 21 cemeteries across the United States gathered to form an organization that today is known as the International Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Association. Join us as we toast 125 years of progress and growth and look forward to a bright and productive future.

1:30 p.m.
ICCFA Fall Management Golf Tournament



Registration Type
ICCFA member $779  
Non-member $899  
(includes entry into the receptions)

Register online now by clicking here or download a registration form (PDF).



Arizona Biltmore: A Waldorf Astoria Resort
2400 East Missouri Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85016

The ICCFA has secured the low room rate of $199 per night (single/double occupancy). This includes:

  • Guestroom high-speed Internet access
  • Biltmore Spa & Fitness Center admittance
  • Unlimited local telephone calls
  • Daily newspaper
  • Use of putting course
  • Biltmore Fashion park shuttle

To take advantage of this conference rate, call 1.800.HILTONS (4458667) by September 19 and say that you are attending the ICCFA Fall Management Conference.

Since 1929, Arizona Biltmore has been a destination of inspiration. 39 acres of gardens, swimming pools and iconic architecture stir a city to life, provide safe haven to celebrities and presidents, and play muse to guests' whims and wishes throughout this historical luxury resort. Championship golf, a 22,000+ square foot spa and fitness center, multiple restaurants, and a variety of amenities await you. Experience the unrivaled grace of this timeless treasure with a spirited soul.



Welcome to Phoenix, Arizona's grand desert resort oasis...

Things are different in the desert. The sky is bigger. The stars are brighter. The sunsets stop you in your tracks.

It’s a feeling that can’t be conjured, landscaped or kindled with twinkling bulbs. John Ford knew that. So did Frank Lloyd Wright. Come to Greater Phoenix and you’ll understand, too.

America’s sixth-largest city still has real cowboys and rugged mountains and the kind of cactus most people see only in cartoons. Phoenix is the gateway to the Grand Canyon, and its history is a testament to the spirit of puebloans, ranchers, miners and visionaries.

Projected against this rich backdrop is a panorama of urban sophistication: Resorts and spas that drop jaws and soothe souls. Stadiums and arenas worthy of the world’s biggest sports spectacles. Restaurants with inspired cuisine and inspiring patio views. Golf courses that beckon players the year round. Shopping centers as stylish and eclectic as the fashions they house.

This is Greater Phoenix—Arizona’s urban heart and America’s sunniest metropolis.

Visit the Biltmore's tourist page or explore www.visitphoenix.com to plan your trip. Free travel guides are available upon request.


Fall2012registrationform.pdf117.72 KB