January 16–18, 2024
Park MGM Las Vegas | Las Vegas, NV

Early bird registration closes in:



Save the date for January 16–18, 2024, when DEAD Talks returns to Las Vegas, this time at the Park MGM Las Vegas hotel! We can’t wait to see you again for another amazing two-and-a-half days of expanding your careers as deathcare sales professionals and family service counselors.


If you are a family service counselor or deathcare sales professional then this is a can’t-miss event! Over the two and a half days, you’ll gain new strategies and knowledge to ensure success for yourself and your organization, all while providing better service to your families.


Through Nov. 29, 2023 After Nov. 29, 2023
Individual ICCFA Member $720 $750
Individual Non-member $950 $975
2-4 Total Attendees $700 per person $720 per person
5-9 Total Attendees $675 per person $700 per person
10+ Total Attendees $650 per person $675 per person

Regular online registration closes on January 10, 2024.


  • 3:00 – 6:30 PM
    Presidio Foyer
  • 3:30 – 5:00 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    Whether you are attending DEAD Talks for the first time, or back for more of a good thing, we want to welcome you and will share tips on how to make the most of your time and enjoy yourself at DEAD Talks 2024! Along with our hallmark 18-minute, info-packed “DEAD Talks”, we will also have a hands-on keynote/workshop, networking receptions, and lunch-and-learn sessions.
  • 5:00 – 6:30 PM
    Presidio 4-5
  • 7:00 AM – 5:00 PM
    Presidio Foyer
  • 7:15 – 8:15 AM
    Presidio 4-5
  • 8:00 – 8:15 AM
    Presidio 1-3
  • 8:15 – 8:30 AM
    Presidio 1-3
  • 8:30 – 11:00 AM
    Presidio 1-3
    KEYNOTE – Winning with Referrals: A Guaranteed Bet for Business
    Tiffanie Kellog
    In Las Vegas, a city of high stakes, discover a strategy that’s a guaranteed win: mastering referral marketing. Introducing “Winning with Referrals: A Guaranteed Bet for Business,” tailored specifically for the deathcare industry’s unique challenges. This presentation dives into the essence of effective referrals. We’ll debunk the myth that you should cater to everyone, emphasizing the power of targeting the ideal client base. More than just identifying your market, we’ll equip you with strategies to ensure your referrers can confidently recommend your services, even in an industry where discussions can be sensitive. The key takeaway is the creation of a concise, 1-Page Referral Marketing Plan for your business. This ensures every attendee departs with a clear strategy to boost their business. Join us and make “Winning with Referrals” your surefire strategy for business growth in the deathcare industry.
    Tiffanie Kellog entered the entrepreneurial world in 2003 and since then has enjoyed being able to help her clients MAKE MONEY, SAVE TIME, and have FUN! Since then, Tiffanie has spent her time traveling across the globe helping thousands of entrepreneurs create amazing businesses and have spectacular lives – through keynote presentations, workshops, online programs, and more! Tiffanie is the author of 4 ½ Networking Mistakes: Maximize Your Networking Efforts by Avoid Common Mistakes, Knock the Socks off Your Audience: Delivering Presentations with Power and Passion to Audiences Large and Small. and Socks to Success: Be memorable! Branding to Generate More Referrals. She is also the creator of the online program, 13 Months a Year: How to Have More Time, so Easy It Will Knock Your Socks Off.
  • 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    Erin Creger and Dan Kientzel
    As proven sales leaders, Dan Kientzel and Erin Creger will facilitate a Leader Lab Discussion, focused on generating NEW Pre-Need Opportunities for your locations, through community events. In this 90-minute session, they will share insights, strategies, and best-practices to make the most, out of your community events. Whether you’re learning the basics of getting started or wanting to take your community event program to the next level, you will leave with specific takeaways to implement immediately at your location. During this session the following will be shared and discussed: Ideas for themes; What to include in your plan; Simple ways to market your events; how to create an engaging and effective event presentation; Why transparency and education are key; Simple methods to ensure a meaningful number of attendees book an appointment with your team. Come prepared with your questions, as we work together to make your program as successful as it can be.
    With over two decades dedicated to sales leadership and excellence, Erin Creger is passionate about driving growth, building meaningful relationships and delivering exceptional results. She joined the Funeral Profession nearly a decade ago after a personal experience with her grandmother helped her discover her passion for helping families pre-arrange. Before her time in death care, she worked as an award-winning sales leader crafting her skills as a full-cycle sales expert and cultivating high-performing sales teams. She enjoys traveling with her husband and teenage son and looks for any opportunity to hike and get lost in the Utah mountains. Erin is currently the Chief Sales Officer with Envision Strategic Partners, a national preneed marketing organization based out of Salt Lake City, UT.
    Dan Kientzel, has held different sales roles with SCI since August of 2001. During his 22 year tenure, he’s held various sales management, leadership and training roles within SCI’s North America Sales Division. Currently, he is a Sales Excellence and Growth Program Manager II. Dan has literally trained, mentored and inspired 100’s of individual Sales Leaders throughout the SCI Network. Passionate about transforming lives and helping Sales Leaders, and their teams, achieve their personal and professional goals; he pours heart and soul into providing, cutting edge tools and practices, necessary for success.
  • 12:30 – 2:00 PM
  • 2:00 PM
  • 2:00 – 2:20 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #1 – TBD
  • 2:20 – 2:40 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #2 – Your Marketing is An Extension of You… How Do You Want To Show Up for Families?
    Courtney Gould Miller
    In this industry, we avoid calling families “customers,” but that’s what they are! Every customer has a unique journey during their experience with your firm. Whether or not it’s a smooth or a rocky journey is completely up to you (and your staff) … and it all starts with your marketing. Did you know there’s a cost-effective way to make high-quality marketing pieces that can make a family’s journey easier, build better loyalty within your community, and help you get more five-star reviews? During her DEAD Talk, Courtney Gould Miller will be sharing the latest automation and AI tools that firms of all sizes can start using right away to help them exceed family expectations.
    Courtney has been in the funeral profession for many years and now serves as the Chief Customer Officer at Tribute Technology, focusing on providing high-quality customer experience journeys for funeral directors and families, along with leading the company’s sales and marketing teams. She also serves as Legal Counsel for MKJ Marketing and advises funeral homes on best practices for risk management and business strategy from her years of experience representing Fortune 500 companies as an attorney.
  • 2:40 – 3:00 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #3 – Strategic Use of Influencer Marketing to Establish Brand Trust Through Authentic Storytelling
    Elsa Mou
    Funeral homes and crematories have traditionally relied on word-of-mouth referrals and local advertising. However, influencer marketing is becoming increasingly popular in today’s digital age. By partnering with influencers, especially the strategic use of micro-influencers, funeral homes and crematories can: Reach a wider audience, using lower-than-usual marketing expense; Utilize authentic, third party storytelling; Educate and de-stigmatize pre-planning and talking about death; Target specific audiences; Leverage the trust and credibility built by the influencer ; and Strengthen brand presence on social media.
    I grew my Pomeranian’s Instagram account to 10K+ followers and my personal account to 4K+ followers with engagement rates double that of industry average. As a micro influencer, I work with 20+ brands every month. The businesses I’ve work with includes memorial supplier businesses, skin care, travel, pet products, etc. There could so many more funeral homes and crematory participating in the creator economy and leverage influencer marketing, but I do not see any today.
  • 3:00 PM
  • 3:00 – 3:20 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talks #4 – AI: Friend, Foe, or the Future of the Profession?
    Charlie Cole
    Charlie Cole has been creating innovative software specifically for the funeral profession for a decade and a half. When it comes to new tech, he’s used to hearing everyone’s worries and concerns. With AI, a common one is, “Are the robots coming for my job?” Well, at least, in the funeral profession, he doesn’t think you have anything to worry about! So, how can AI help you and your families? And how much innovative AI technology is in the future for the funeral profession? Charlie will be sharing strategies to use AI to free up your time to do the things that matter … and leave behind the boring tasks that are great for robots to handle! Plus, he’ll talk about how he sees AI technology revolutionizing the funeral profession in the next five years.
  • 3:20 – 3:40 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD TALK #5 – Winging It! How’s That Working?
    Dan White
    Using new and exciting digital tools to provide a more effective, efficient, and visually compelling focused pre-arrangement conversation with a family.
    Dan joined Cairn Partners in April 2019 as a Sales Manager for one of our client firms. Prior to joining Cairn, Dan was a Sales Manager for a large Funeral Home/Cemetery combo in the Seattle market.  He has more than 40 years of experience in marketing, management, computer technology, and sales training. While as a Sales Manager, Dan was an active participant in the design and development of the Cairn “Remote Visit Dashboard” used by our client firms. In August of 2021, Dan took the role of Remote Visit Dashboard Trainer, combining his experience in sales training and the use of technology to meet Preneed families where they are.
  • 3:40 – 4:00 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD TALK #6 – The AI Revolution: Unlocking the Future of Business
    Chuck Gallagher
    Are you ready to unlock the full potential of AI for your business? Join us to demystify this game-changing technology and explore the possibilities it holds. Our live demonstrations of AI applications, including ChatGPT, Veed.io, Quillbot, Soundraw, Synthesia.io and midjourney, will give you a firsthand look at what’s possible. Don’t miss this chance to stay ahead of the curve and gain the knowledge you need to drive innovation and growth in your business.
    Described as creative, insightful, captivating, and a person that “connects the dots” between behavior, choices and success, Chuck gives his clients what they need to turn concepts into actions and actions into results. With Chuck, you have a professional industry sharing practical, tested, and time-proven methods to enhance personal and professional performance. As a certified professional speaker, with over 10 years of experience, Chuck is the perfect speaker to book for your meetings and conferences.
  • 4:00 PM
  • 4:00 – 4:20 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD TALK #7 – Aiming Hire: Recruiting and Retaining Quality Talent
    Kelly Kohut
    With the seismic shifts and changing demographics of the job market, funeral homes are struggling to attract high-quality candidates. In this session, you’ll learn about three recruiting challenges facing funeral homes and which strategies are proven to generate top talent from both within and outside the profession. Learn how to create remarkable experiences during hiring and onboarding and how to develop talent to be ambassadors and advocates for your funeral home brand.
    Kelly Kohut’s talent for business growth blends perfectly with her passion for helping funeral homes connect with more families through preneed. With a degree in marketing and an MBA, Kelly honed her sales and marketing skills in the healthcare industry before deciding to pursue a career with a purpose-driven company. She serves as Senior Director of Field Project Development at Precoa, where her incredible leadership and skill at cross-functional problem solving make her a key member of every team she is a part of.
  • 4:20 – 4:40 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD TALK #8 – Building Your Organization for the Future
    Jason Buchbinder
    We will highlight the key characteristics of leadership required for alignment & relationship to successfully ‘acquire’ talent in the post-Covid era.  Further, we will highlight the knowledge & everboarding approach necessary to retain your new talent and build upon a safe, inclusive culture & environment.
    Jason Buchbinder has directly and/or indirectly placed 1,000’s of amazing men and women in our industry across North America for 16 years.
  • 4:40 – 5:00 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD TALK #9 – From Grave to Great: Unearthing the Secrets of Recruiting and Retaining Talent in the Funeral Industy
    Cody Spradlin
    As one of the first-ever, full-time dedicated recruiters in the funeral industry, resident millennial for ESP, and former Preneed Agent I have a unique perspective into the world of hiring qualified talent that sticks. In my session, I’ll be covering:
    -How to source and hire talent around the country
    -How to survive working with Millennials & Gen-Z
    -What is it that young professionals are ACTUALLY looking for
    I have been with Envision Strategic Partners for nearly 4 years now. After beginning as a funeral preneed agent in So-Cal, I was promoted to Director of Recruiting after hearing of the position’s vacancy on one of our weekly training calls. Having been part of the generation that was unwittingly coding their Myspace pages to play their favorite Green Day song, I have a well-developed understanding of the internet and exactly how to navigate it which has been my greatest strength since taking on this endeavor. In just two short years I have managed to hire almost 90 people, 53 of whom were hired in the first two quarters of 2023.
  • 5:00 – 6:00 PM
    Presidio 4-5

  • 7:30 AM – 12:30 PM
    Presidio Foyer
  • 7:30 – 8:45 AM
    Presidio 4-5
  • 8:30 AM
  • 8:30 – 8:50 AM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #10 – Discipline of Appointment Setting
    Greg Norris
    Using the book, The Compound Effect, written by Darren Hardy, as a guide, we will discuss how choices, routines and habits effect our success.
    Greg Norris has been in the preneed profession for 29 years.  Much of the first 10 years were spent meeting with families and selling funeral pre-arrangement.  The last 19 years with Homesteaders has been spent helping funeral home and their agents achieve their sales goals.  Greg is also one of the trainers for Homesteaders Successful Sales Skills classes.
  • 8:50 – 9:10 AM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #11 – Sales Conversions in a Digital World
    Kevin Bitnoff
    Today’s consumer is an empowered consumer. Families are more knowledgeable and tech-savvy than ever before, and they will often have multiple digital touchpoints before they are sales-ready. Being able to navigate the digital landscape is a must, and there are key strategies you can use to ensure the quality of the experience is seamless, consistent, and meaningful.
    From his early days as a school-age entrepreneur to his experience as a multi-year million-dollar producer for both funeral and cemetery, Kevin Bitnoff has always had a passion for sales. Today, as Director of West Coast Sales for Precoa, Kevin works side by side with over 100 leading funeral homes where he has mentored and managed over 100 million-dollar producers. Kevin has built a reputation over the last 12 years for developing not just top salespeople but true preneed professionals who care deeply about educating and connecting with families. When he’s not training some of the very best in the profession, Kevin is a compelling public speaker and a devoted family man whose four daughters help keep him humble while inspiring him to never stop progressing.
  • 9:10 – 9:30 AM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #12 – The Basics: Why Do We Sometimes Forget?
    Noble Sines
    This session will address a “do and don’t” specific to the scenario of when a funeral home doesn’t have full-time advanced funeral planner, but instead has a funeral director(s) take on the prearrangement responsibilities. Highlighting the difference between the slightly more passive approach used with at-need families compared with the more active approach necessary for preneed families.
    Noble Sines spent 5 years with Precoa selling preneed and managed a 12.5 million dollar territory in Florida comprised of 16 funeral homes; built Sepio Guards’ brand and trained all new and existing agents on the proven best method to include Away from Home Assurance in a family’s prearrangement; and now recruits, hires, trains, and coaches advanced funeral planners with Domani Preneed. 
  • 9:30 AM
  • 9:30 – 9:50 AM 
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #13 – The Highest Lead -to-Sale Conversion Rate: Referral Prospecting
    Brent Thomas
    Referrals are the best type of leads.  They close faster and with a higher ratio than other lead sources.  According to Homesteaders Policy Owner research, 47% of policy owners first learned about prearranging from someone who had done it,  74% of them considered making arrangement with only one funeral establishment, 98% of them were completely/very satisfied with their decisions to prearrange, 58% have recommended prearranging and 40% would consider recommending. This data shows that satisfied consumers who previously prearranged are the best prospecting tool and will offer referrals.  By knowing this data and how to use it, preneed specialist will not only, get more referrals that close faster, they’ll be more comfortable with asking for referrals.   They’ll even be ready to overcome a referral objection.
    Brent Thomas is the Director-Field Training and Development at Homesteaders Life Company. Prior to joining Homesteaders, Brent spent 23 years in the funeral profession, including 17 years at Batesville Casket Company. Beginning as a preneed counselor Buchanan Group, Inc., he quickly moved into cemetery sales management. At Batesville, Brent’s roles ranged from key account and business consulting to cremation and sales management. He holds a degree in Organizational Communications from Indiana University and is a certified facilitator of InsideOut Coaching. Brent’s award-winning experience as a business consultant, coach/mentor and strategic sales leader is rooted in his commitment to helping families honor their loved ones.
  • 9:50 – 10:10 AM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #14 – Words Matter
    Rob Shalvey
    In our world of selling we are very accustomed to scripts and presentations.  The real masters understand that word choice can be very important.  We already know that we should avoid using industry jargon and acronyms.  This dynamic session will identify words that have a negative subconscious effect in selling interactions that are hurting your presentations without you even knowing it.  They will learn why some commonly used words can be a hidden bomb in a sales interaction.  Attendees will leave this session knowing several words they should avoid using and what to replace them with that will help increase their appointment rate, reduce appointment cancelations, increase their presentation effectiveness, sales average and closing rate.  They will also learn the one thing in both a funeral presentation and a cemetery presentation that most people get wrong.
    Rob Shalvey has served for over 30 years in Funeral Service.  He is a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer as well as a Licensed General Lines Life Insurance Agent.  His career has encompassed Funeral Home and Cemetery Operations and Sales Leadership roles in Colorado, Texas and Louisiana.  An accomplished speaker and presenter who has contributed at several events, seminars and conventions.  Rob has been most recently seen as a contestant in the Pre-Need Sales Showdown at the 2023 Dead Talks.  Rob currently serves as the Director of Family Service for Rest Haven Funeral Home and Cemetery in Rockwall, Texas where he lives with his wife Sara and three of his four sons.  Rob has a passion for training and developing success in others.
  • 10:10 – 10:30 AM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #15 –
    Aaron Butler
  • 10:30 AM
  • 10:30 – 11:00 AM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #16 – Solving the Sales Puzzle
    Jorge Vara II
    Are you puzzled when someone asks for your plan to increase sales this year?  Jorge will share ideas, processes, and solutions that you can immediately implement to increase sales.  Sales can be a puzzle of many departments and this session will enable attendees to see how they can grow sales regardless of what department they  represent.
    Jorge Vara II has worked in the sales profession for over 20 years across the industries of professional sports, oil and gas, consulting and deathcare. For the last 15 years, he has served in sales leadership growing top line revenue in each role. He is currently serving as the Director of Sales at Fairmount Memorial Association based in Spokane, Washington. Prior to joining Fairmount in 2020, he served as a sales manager at Service Corporation International from 2015 to 2020 in Seattle and Oklahoma City.  His greatest joy at work is seeing individuals and organizations break their sales records.
  • 11:00 – 11:30 AM
    Presidio 1-3
    DEAD Talk #17 – Embracing an Ownership Mindset in the Workplace
    Karen Shine
    An individual who exhibits an ownership mindset is critical to the success of any business.  They think like a boss and take initiative to fix issues and move forward without blaming other team members. These individuals look into managing up, accept constructive feedback and provide active solutions. They never have an “it’s not my job” attitude and does what it takes to have a team mentality.
    Karen Shine is the Director of Business Development for Envision Strategic Partners. With over 15 years in the death care profession, she has a wide range of experience in various aspects of the industry. Karen received both her Bachelor’s in Marketing and Masters of Business Administration from Lindenwood University. She is a licensed Funeral Director and licensed Pre-Need and Life agent in Missouri. She started her career in Pre-Need and cemetery sales with Baue Funeral Homes, Crematory, & Cemetery in St. Charles, Mo. She went on to manage Baue Pet Cremations and later became the Sales Director for the Cremation Society of Missouri. Prior to joining the Envision team, Karen was a Funeral Home Growth Specialist with Ring Ring Marketing. Realizing her true passion for Pre-Need and educating families with empathy and compassion, Karen is excited to bring her unique skillset for helping others to Envision Strategic Partners.
  • 11:30 AM – 12: 00 PM
    Presidio 1-3
    Shane Pudenz

Keynote Speaker: Tiffanie Kellog

Tiffanie Kellog entered the entrepreneurial world in 2003 and since then has enjoyed being able to help her clients make money, save time, and have fun! Since then, Tiffanie has spent her time traveling across the globe helping thousands of entrepreneurs create amazing businesses and have spectacular lives – through keynote presentations, workshops, online programs, and more!

Whether sharing her expertise (with her southern accent) on referral marketing, networking or maximizing your time, Tiffanie will knock the socks off the audience with her fun and entertaining presentations while leaving them with eTiffanies (epiphanies from Tiffanie) to help create results in their world!!!

Tiffanie shares, “My goal is to help people achieve their dreams by giving them the tools needed to make more money in less time so they can have more fun!”

Tiffanie is the author of 4 ½ Networking Mistakes: Maximize Your Networking Efforts by Avoid Common Mistakes, Knock the Socks off Your Audience: Delivering Presentations with Power and Passion to Audiences Large and Small, and Socks to Success: Be memorable! Branding to Generate More Referrals. She is also the creator of the online program, 13 Months a Year: How to Have More Time, so Easy It Will Knock Your Socks Off.


Park MGM

3770 S Las Vegas Blvd

Las Vegas, NV 89109

ICCFA’s negotiated block rate is as follows:
Monday, January 15, Tuesday, January 16 and Thursday, January 18 = $59 per night plus (not including tax or the $39 resort fee);
Wednesday, January 17 = $79 per night plus (not including tax or the $39 resort fee)

Park MGM is offering ICCFA guests a special rate pre- and post-event, should you be interested in extending your stay. Saturday, January 13 = $279; Sunday, January 14 = $59; Friday, January 19 = $229; Saturday, January 20 = $229 (not including tax or the $39 resort fee).

The last date to reserve a room in the ICCFA’s block is December 22, 2023.


Every year, the ICCFA Educational Foundation provides scholarships to current ICCFA members to attend DEAD Talks. The scholarships provided cover all registration costs, so attendees only need to pay for travel and lodging. This year, 50 scholarships will be available for application. Scholarship applicants will need to answer an essay in their application.

Please note: The scholarship application deadline is Wednesday, November 29 at 11:59 PM EST.

Click the button below for more information and to apply.


Black Diamond Level

Diamond Level

Platinum Level

Gold Level

Silver Level

Sponsorship Opportunities

If your organization is interested in showing your support for the ICCFA and the deathcare profession, consider becoming a sponsor! Attendees at DEAD Talks will see your organization’s logo and branding, solidifying your place as a leader in deathcare.

For sponsorship opportunities, contact ICCFA Meetings Manager Lindsy Gundrum at lindsy@iccfa.com.

Past presentations

We keep presentations from previous years available for you in our archives.

Photos from the 2023 DEAD Talks