FDChat #12 – Women and Men in the Funeral Industry

FDChat #12 – Women and Men in the Funeral Industry

with nancy

Nancy Burban talks with Kim Stacey about gender biases and women in the funeral industry. She is a licensed California funeral director, anthropologist and freelance writer. She has a strong following on Facebook and LinkedIn and in 2009 she founded the Association of Women Funeral Professionals.

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  • UPD Urns

Show Notes

Contact Kim Stacey:
Cremation Safeguard Group

Association of Women Funeral Professionals
LinkedIn Group AWFP
Joan Billman of Fleming Billman
A Special Touch Funeral Service
Lohman Funeral Homes

Interview Excerpt:

Kim: This is the model that Sharon Mace uses for A Special Touch Funeral Service in Dublin. I wrote a column on her for Mortuary Management this month, and she's got a phenomenally successful small business. And she's the woman in charge.

And that allows her to do something different than working for a male employer, which she has done. And she chose to do things differently. So that may be an option for Rhode Island and New York; I'm not sure.

Nancy: Now you said she outsources, so that she would be ...

Kim: That's right. She outsources everything. Her crematory is in San Leandro; her embalmer is in San Jose. She operates her business out of a tech center in Dublin. It's a little tiny firm, probably the size of your living room. Sharon's firm is, I would say, about the size of my office. It's very small, very homey. You can see pictures of her facility online at her website, aspecialtouchfuneralservice.com, if you're interested in looking. But it's small. It has not got a visitation room. It has not got a prep room.
She outsources her cremations and her embalming. It's all done off site, and it's working.

Nancy: And how does she attract clients?

Kim: She's got a very strong networking and educational program going on. She does a lot of senior fairs. She also is part of Rotary. She does a lot of things with the Rotary. It's all word of mouth primarily. She's got a high rate of client satisfaction.

Kim Stacey Interview Transcript

Leave a Comment

  • Ed Swarnes

    This was an informative and very relatable topic for me . I have had a few strong women in funeral service I have a great deal of respect for in their attitudes in looking at abilities and not inabilities. Putting the right people together male and female to serve the common goal of serving families. The one I most admire and respect is the late Lois Marsh she never looked at gender she looked at the abilitiy of what any of us brought to the table. She was ahead of her time.. I wish all women and men in funeral service could see this. Keep up the good work Kim…!!!

  • Ed Swarnes

    I was absolutely delighted to hear this podcast. It is true, as a woman I will have to work very hard in this profession. As Ms. Stacey explained, if we can be hired and given opportunities because of our skill sets and our hard work ethic, then it shouldn’t matter what gender we are. Thank you for this wonderful insight.

  • Shanna

    My daughter is 18 and in school for funeral director/embalming. She is a student at a local funeral home and has had 2 different people in the profession tell her that it is hard for women ,expecially in a small town. She has been told she would have to go to a large city to have a fair shake. Is there anything she can take along with her (advice) to help her succeed in this business.

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