Brookfield, WI — Women and non-binary individuals who want to build empathy, trust, confidence and resilience in their professional and personal lives should plan to attend the 2023 National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) Professional Women’s Conference. This inspiring and uplifting conference will take place May 5-7 at the Westin Riverwalk in San Antonio, Texas. Registration opens March 13. 

The Funeral Service Foundation will offer 20 all-inclusive David C. Baue NFDA Professional Women’s Conference Scholarships to make the profession’s premier event for women and non-binary professionals even more accessible.

The 2023 Professional Women’s Conference will feature thought-provoking conference sessions led by exceptional speakers covering a wide range of topics:

  • May 6
    • “Girls Don’t Whistle?” presented by author and communication coach Vera Jones will empower women who want overcome imposter syndrome and other limitations in leadership and life. Jones’ presentation is sponsored by Precoa. 
    • During “The Meaning of Success,” a panel of leaders in funeral service will discuss the meaning of “success,” how they are achieving it, the sacrifices and wins that got them there, and the challenges in today’s market. 
    • During “Owning Your History, Cultivating Your Future,” Erin Creger and Honnalora Hubbard of Envision Strategic Partners will help you understand how a person’s personal history – the good and the bad – can serve as a foundation to propel their life forward. 
    • Jessica Koth, director of public relations for NFDA, and Kelly Manion, director of community engagement for the Funeral Service Foundation, will help attendees improve communication and build supportive and collaborative relationships with one another during their interactive session, “It’s Not a Competition!” 
  • May 7
    • Concurrent Sessions – choose from:
      • Attendees can take a step back to mortuary science school and refresh their understanding of how chemistry relates to their work in the prep room during “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: The Science Behind Embalming” presented by Autumn Cooper of The Dodge Company.
      • An expert from Precoa and a practicing funeral service professional will co-present “You’ll Love It Here: How to Make Workplace Culture a Competitive Advantage.” They will share practical advice for creating and supporting a purpose-driven workplace culture, which can help retain and attract high-quality employees. 
    • During “Live Through Love,” artist, activist and entrepreneur Ruben Rojas will discuss how living through love can be a force for good in life and in business. 

Engaging Discussions and Networking

In the spirit of Cinco de Mayo and the vibrant Hispanic culture infused in the city of San Antonio, attendees can kick off their Professional Women’s Conference experience with a complimentary fiesta celebration at Casa Rio on the famed San Antonio Riverwalk. While enjoying delectable Tex-Mex cuisine and refreshing beverages, guests will experience a fun-filled opening event complete with music by an all-female mariachi band and a photobooth to capture memories with friends old and new. National Guardian Life Insurance Company is pleased to sponsor this event.

There are countless other opportunities to network during the Professional Women’s Conference. “This weekend really reaffirmed why I chose this career path,” said one 2022 conference attendee. “I met amazingly brilliant women that I could speak openly with and they could reciprocate. I truly enjoyed everything!”

Another 2022 attendee noted, “Attending the Professional Women’s Conference is one of the main highlights of my year. I am grateful for the continued opportunity to attend and to network. I cannot express my gratitude enough to all who work so hard to put this together.”

Scholarship Opportunities

The Funeral Service Foundation is offering up to 20 David C. Baue NFDA Professional Women’s Conference Scholarships to female and non-binary funeral professionals and students to attend this year’s event. The scholarships are all-inclusive and cover registration and event fees, a two-night stay at the Westin Riverwalk, and up to $500 in travel reimbursement.

Applicants must be verifiably employed in funeral service or related occupations or be a student in good standing and currently attending classes at an ABSFE- or Canadian-accredited institution or program; NFDA membership is not required. Complete requirements and the application form will be online soon at Applications will be accepted from February 6 to February 22. Winners will be announced the week of March 10.

“I am so eternally and inexpressibly grateful to the Baue family for the scholarship fund,” said a 2022 scholarship recipient. “It would have been utterly unthinkable for me to attend the conference on my own dime, but it was a lovely and enriching experience that I hope to carry forward with me into professional practice.”

Inspiration Award

During the 2022 NFDA Professional Women’s Conference, the association will confer the inaugural Inspiration Award. This award will recognize an exceptional female or non-binary individual who has made noteworthy professional contributions to funeral service or a related field. 

Nominations for the NFDA Inspiration Award will be accepted online from February 15 to March 31. The ideal nominee is an enterprising individual who consistently takes the initiative to elevate the funeral service profession. They serve as a mentor to colleagues. Their energy and independent spirit serve as an example to others. Their efforts result in significant accomplishments at the local, national and/or international level.

Complete details are available at NFDA is grateful to National Guardian Life Insurance Company for sponsoring the Inspiration Award. 

Registration Opens March 12

Registration for the 2023 NFDA Professional Women’s Conference opens March 12. Attendees must register for the 2023 NFDA Professional Women’s Conference by May 2. Registration fees are: 

  • First Registrant
    • NFDA member licensed funeral director: 
      • On or before April 4: $495
      • After April 4: $545
    • Nonmember licensed funeral director: 
      • On or before April 4: $645
      • After April 4: $695
    • Nonmember non-funeral director: 
      • On or before April 4: $495
      • After April 4: $545
  • Second registrant from the same organization: 
    • On or before April 4: $470
    • After April 4: $520
  • Student (accredited funeral service education program): $100

Details about the 2023 NFDA Professional Women’s Conference will be available soon at, or by calling 800-228-6332 (262-789-1880).

Perfectly positioned on the famed San Antonio Riverwalk, the Westin Riverwalk hotel is an unmatched downtown location. This upscale hotel is near the Pearl District, home to downtown restaurants, bars, shopping and entertainment. NFDA has secured a limited number of rooms at the Westin Riverwalk for a discounted rate of $215 plus tax for a cityside room and $235 for a riverside room. When registration for the conference opens on March 12, attendees will be able to visit to secure their room by the April 13 deadline. 

About NFDA

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

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