Colorado Funeral Directors Association

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In Memory

  • Friday, September 30, 2016 5:40 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    CFDA representatives and Colorado funeral directors attended a stakeholders meeting with Karen McGovern, new program director for DORA's Office of Funeral Establishment and Crematory Registration, and other DORA staff on September 29 to discuss proposed definitions and rules pertaining to positive identification and custody according to the Mortuary Science Code. Stakeholder input is crucial to achieving DORA's mission of consumer protection and effective licensure and enforcement, without unnecessary impediment to the economic market. 

    Representing CFDA, Chuck Bowman and Steffani Blackstock explained practical applications for determining positive identification and documenting chain of custody, including scenarios in which a party is unwilling to sign a release to confirm identity or transfer custody.

    Also discussed was what constitutes the end of the chain of custody, thereby ending responsibility by the funeral home or crematory. 

    The law states that the funeral establishment/crematory is responsible for tracking human remains from the time it takes custody until (a) final disposition has occurred or remains are returned to the person who has the right of final disposition; or (b) human remains are released in accordance with the instructions given by the person who has the right of final disposition. By definition, "final disposition" includes entombment, burial, cremation or removal from the state. Burial, entombment and removal from the state are more divisive in establishing the termination of custody and responsibility; the end of a responsibility for cremation cases was unclear. 

    Recommendation was offered that a specific date be confirmed when making cremation arrangements in which the authorized next of kin must claim the cremated remains, and that retrieval date concludes responsibility for those remains on the part of the funeral home/crematory.

    Changes to the proposed rules will be presented to the Director for approval and a rulemaking hearing is expected to take place in early November. 

  • Tuesday, September 27, 2016 8:50 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Don’t Get Burned

    Fire Prevention Week – October 9-15, 2016

    Every year, fires costs business owners billions of dollars – and that number doesn’t even begin to measure the impact fires have on businesses and families of employees who are injured or killed by the blaze.

    Fire Prevention Week, October 9-15, 2016, is a great opportunity to remember that preventing workplace fires is not a yearly, monthly, or even weekly activity—it is a daily activity. Investigations reveal that most fires can be prevented if businesses consistently pay attention to a few, very specific hazards. To help you and your employees make it home safely each day, your Federated Insurance team is excited to share a new resource: a customizable, fire prevention checklist. (The latest full version of Adobe Reader is required to open and use the customizable checklist.)

    Made available to all association members through our partnership with Federated, the checklist helps you identify and implement fire prevention practices that are needed most and can significantly impact your business. It also includes a few common fire hazards and also allows you the flexibility to add the unique risks and exposures your business faces.

    For Federated Clients, create your own customizable checklist by logging on to Federated’s Shield Network® at or contacting our Risk Management Resource Center at 1.888.333.4949 or  At Federated Insurance, It’s Our Business to Protect Yours®.

  • Wednesday, August 31, 2016 11:21 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Colorado Public Radio aired an updated this morning on the news show, Colorado Matters, about the Montrose funeral home owner who discovered unclaimed cremated remains left behind in the funeral parlour he had recently purchased. 

    The building had served as a funeral establishment since 1931 and previous owners had accumulated more than 5 decades worth of cremated remains, stored in various types of containers in the basement. 

    Many of the remains were thought to have been buried or scattered; others were not identifiable, or had no family in which to retrieve them.

    The story began with honest intentions. In an attempt to repatriate the remains, a list of the names of the deceased in a local newspaper so that family members would have the opportunity to reclaim their loved ones' remains.  Despite the public outrage and disgust, many of the remains were returned to family members. The unclaimed and unidentified remains were given a proper send-off with military honors at a local memorial service held in June.

    CFDA's executive director, Steffani Blackstock, reported about the association's efforts to restore regulatory oversight to Colorado's funeral business.

    Listen to the podcast online at Colorado Public Radio. (This story begins 30 minutes into the 1 hour program.)

  • Monday, August 29, 2016 5:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    CFDA will launch its new education program, “The Basics of Colorado Funeral Service Laws”, at the upcoming Fall District Meetings. 

    Space is limited. Click here to Register Online now. 

    This program, developed by the Colorado Funeral Directors Association, provides a brief review of Colorado Revised Statutes and federal laws that pertain to funeral service. The class will be a great refresher for the experienced professional and an excellent primer for new employees to learn basics about the funeral business in Colorado.

    Few people know more about Colorado funeral service laws than Chuck Bowman, CMSP, CFSP, CCO, long-time chair of Legislative & Advocacy for the Colorado Funeral Directors Association. He has testified in support of funeral service on numerous occasions, helped to write much of the language that now appears in statutes, and continues to serve as a liaison with state regulatory authorities as a resource for funeral service in Colorado. Steffani Blackstock has worked with the CFDA for more than 20 years and has taken an active role in legislative and advocacy efforts since her appointment as Executive Director in 2005.

    The Fall District Meetings will be held in two locations - in Longmont on August 24, and in Colorado Springs on August 31. Western slope members are invited to participate in a two-part webinar series on September 7 and 14. Click here for registration information.

    The Colorado Funeral Service Board has approved 2.5 contact hours of CE credit for this program.  The credits may be applied toward 2017 CFSB certification renewal.

  • Wednesday, August 10, 2016 8:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Denver Athletic Club in downtown Denver will play host to CFDA's 2016 Annual Meeting on November 10.

    We've packed a LOT of learning, fun and networking into this one-day program!

    • 5+ contact hours of education sessions.
    • Vendor displays
    • Business meeting and elections for the Colorado Funeral Directors Association.
    • Reception co-hosted by the Denver Metropolitan Funeral Directors Association. 
    • Game Night! Engage in a friendly game of billiards, darts and shuffleboard with colleagues, co-workers and friends.

    Our keynote speaker, Dr. Rick Snow is an expert in the field of forensic anthropology. In six years with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Dr. Snow worked more than forensic anthropology cases for more than 80 law enforcement agencies, coroners, and medical examiners in three states. He also conducted more than 60 recoveries of human remains including the excavation of eight wells.

    Now Open! 

    Vendor Registration ($500) includes one (1) admission for the Annual Meeting seminars, lunch, reception and game night, plus one 6-ft. display table. Displays will be set-up in the same room as education programs and refreshment breaks. Vendor set-up begins at 7:30 AM and move-out is at 4:00 PM. Display space is limited!

  • Friday, August 05, 2016 3:45 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    NFDA members will have the opportunity during the month of August to elect individuals to serve in officer positions on the Board of Directors. 

    The new NFDA governance structure, adopted during the 2015 NFDA International Convention & Expo, brought exciting, historic changes to NFDA, including a revitalized process for electing the men and women who will serve on the Board of Directors.

    Under the new structure, all NFDA members will vote for the officers who will serve on the NFDA Board of Directors – president-elect, treasurer and secretary. Officers serve a one-year term, which will commence following the 2016 NFDA Convention. The Policy Board will continue to elect at-large representatives.

    How Can I Vote?

    The election of officers will take place August 1 to August 31, 2016.

    All eligible NFDA members (firm members and individual members) will have the opportunity to vote for the NFDA President-elect, Treasurer and Secretary.

    • Each eligible member who serves as the primary contact for a firm (main location) will receive three votes in total; two on behalf of the firm and one as an individual member.
    • Each eligible member who is not the primary contact for a member firm (main location) will have one vote.

    Firms/individuals must have been members-in-good-standing by July 20, 2016, to be eligible to vote.

    On August 1:

    • Eligible members who have a unique email address on file with NFDA by July 20, 2016, will receive an email with voting information, a link to their electronic ballot and their login credentials.
    • Eligible members who do not have an email address on file will be sent a postcard via USPS with the link to the electronic ballot and their login credentials. If a person receives a postcard and does not have access to a computer, they can request a paper ballot be sent to them.

    Members are not required to vote for each office. They can abstain on one or more items. Regardless of how an eligible member gets to the election ballot, once they have submitted their vote, they will not be able to change their vote or vote a second time.

    Click here to get started and make your vote count!

  • Thursday, June 09, 2016 9:50 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    CFDA hosted Mike Nicodemis for NFDA's Certified Crematory Operator Training in Denver on Thursday, June 9, 2016.

    Cremation litigation is on the rise. Protect your firm through cremation due diligence practices and provide your families with the best cremation service possible.

    This program offers a must-have certification for everyone offering cremation to the families they serve. Whether you currently own or operate a crematory, are thinking of opening one, or want to evaluate a third-party crematory, this training is necessary for your success. 

    The recognized certification standard for funeral service professionals, NFDA’s Certified Crematory Operator Program™ covers best practices for safe, proper, and ethical crematory operations, excellence in service to cremation families, and much more. 

    CFSB and APFSP approve NFDA CCO seminars for 7 CE hours; some state approval hours may vary. NFDA has applied for approval as a crematory operator certification training provider in states mandating operator certification; laws regulating crematory operations and certification vary by state.

  • Friday, May 13, 2016 2:57 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    There is a surprising trend across the country as funeral establishments are left to care for the cremated remains of individuals who are long forgotten by family or friends. Funeral homes across the U.S. are facing the same challenges about what to do with these forgotten remains.

    CFDA helped to change Colorado laws in 2011 to address the appropriate handling for unclaimed cremated remains. 

    The “Exceptions-Safe Harbor” statutes in the Mortuary Science Code outline the requirements for notification of the family, documenting, storing and disposing of unclaimed cremated remains from 180 days to 3 years after cremation. 

    The laws provide that “if cremated remains are not claimed by the person with the right of final disposition within three years after cremation, a funeral establishment may dispose of the remains in an unrecoverable manner by placing the remains in an ossuary or by scattering the remains in a dedicated cemetery, scattering garden, or consecrated ground used exclusively for these purposes.”

    The decision to continue to hold unclaimed cremated remains is left up to the funeral home, and appropriate documentation and notification must be satisfied before any disposition can occur.

    Now is the time to review YOUR firm’s policies and practices for handling cremated remains, including tracking an individual from the time they are taken into the care of the funeral home through the cremated remains being claimed by the next-of-kin or final disposition being carried out.

    The overwhelming majority of funeral directors are dedicated, honest and trustworthy professionals. Please take these issues to heart and be understanding as our communities grapple with concerns raised by these negative stories. 

    Continue to abide by CFDA’s Code of Ethics and do your utmost to ensure trust and integrity for all Funeral Directors and the funeral service profession in Colorado.

    Click here to read the full CFDA Member Bulletin, May 13, 2016

  • Friday, March 04, 2016 3:51 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Mark your calendar and register online now to attend a CFDA District Meeting in your area:

    • Tuesday, March 29 – Grand Junction
    • Thursday, March 31 – Loveland
    • Friday, April 1 – Pueblo

    The education program will run from 1:00 to 4:30 PM and 3.8 contact hours is approved by the Colorado Funeral Service Board. Presentations include:

    • “What Has CFDA Done for Me Lately?” – Steffani Blackstock, CMP, Executive Director, Colorado Funeral Directors Association
    • "Customization: Unlimited Choices for Families” – Terry School, President, The Davis Whitehall Co.
    • Speed Dating Discussion Groups

    An informal social hour will follow the program.

    Registration Fee: $0 for Employees of CFDA Establishment
    Member firms who register online before March 25th

    If space is available after March 25, Non-members will be allowed to register at the door for $38 per person. Full payment will be due at the time of check-in.

    Don’t wait! Seating will be limited so register now!

    Online Registration is required at

  • Thursday, March 03, 2016 6:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Director of the Office of Funeral Establishment and Crematory Registration at the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) held a stakeholder meeting to discuss rules and standards for Colorado mortuary science regulations.

    Senate Bill 15-110 enacted changes to the Mortuary Science Code and DORA’s Director will promulgate rules to:

    • Establish what constitutes custody;
    • Establish who is authorized to identify human remains at a care facility for a funeral establishment or crematory;
    • Prescribe minimum standards for the positive identification and chain of custody of human remains.

    The meeting took place on February 17 at the DORA offices and more than 30 funeral professionals participated in the discussions.

    Program Director Joyce Young will be preparing a draft of the proposed rules and CFDA will share details with Members when available.

Colorado Funeral Directors Association,  P O Box 631664, Highlands Ranch, CO 80163-1664 U.S.A. 

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