COVID-19 Information

 

 

MFDA 94th Annual Meeting & Convention

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We hope you will join us on 11/23/19 in Freeport, Maine for a day full of informative seminars and networking opportunities with your fellow funeral directors, sponsors and vendors! What a great opportunity to get away and spend some quality time with your funeral director community.

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Attendee Registration

Click on the graphic on the left to download the file.

 

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The Opioid Epidemic, Substance Use Disorder & Society's Role in Turning the Tide (1 ceu)

Chief Bob MacKenzie, Kennbunk Police Department

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In this course, attendees will learn:

  • The signs of an opioid overdose and how to administer Naloxone, "the life saving medication that reverses an Opioid overdose”. 
  • About opioid/substance use disorder (OUD/SUD), associated stigma and the role it plays within our society. 
  • How they can become an ally to those with OUD/SUD, giving hope to recovery and thereby saving lives and reducing crime. 
  •  About current law enforcement initiatives and how they can partner with other organizations within their communities in order to raise awareness, bring support and hope, reduce stigma and save lives. 
  • About Rotary International and how we here in Rotary District 7780 are working on recovery initiatives and getting international attention on our efforts.


Bob is a 31 year veteran of law enforcement, currently serving as Chief of Police with the Kennebunk Police Department. Chief MacKenzie began his law enforcement career in 1988 with Kennebunk PD and rose through the ranks, being promoted to Chief of Police in 2008. Chief MacKenzie is a graduate of the 243rd FBI National Academy in Quantico, VA, and holds a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice degree through Husson University. Chief MacKenzie is the producer of the “Point of No Return” a 30 minute movie which depicts the consequences of underage drinking and has been shown in 34 states. Chief MacKenzie is a Past-President of the Kennebunk Rotary Club in which he has served for the past 11 years and is the Chair of the Rotary District 7780 Recovery Initiative and a board member of Milestone Recovery. 

 



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Child Development and Grief Counseling (1 ceu) 

Sara Asch, Center for Grieving Children


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The session on Child Development and Grief will give an overview of the developmental understanding of death of children and teens at various ages, and will engage in a discussion of appropriate and helpful ways to respond to the questions of both children and their parents about children’s experiences. Personal experiences of loss will be examined, and discussion of what it means to be a true helper will be explored.

 

Sara shares responsibility for coordinating the Bereavement Services programming at the Portland location of the Center for Grieving Children. Prior to joining the staff, Sara maintained a long connection with the Center as an intern, volunteer and training consultant. Her current work at the Center involves working closely with families, volunteers and the community in the areas of grief and loss, program development, outreach, and training. Sara holds a Master's Degree in expressive therapies/counseling from Lesley University with an emphasis in expressive therapy. She developed an interest in art therapy while working as a K-12 art teacher, witnessing the ways students naturally processed their experiences through their artwork. Sara used art modalities in her private practice offering support to children, teens and adults during bereavement and other life transitions, and has worked as a clinician with adolescents in a group home setting, an environment where there have been many experiences of loss. 


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The Greening of North American Cemeteries (1 ceu)                                  

Candace Currie & Theresa Kerchner

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This course is a first introduction to the basic premises of green burial. By and large, people are looking for sense of place, of being able to think of their loved ones in a familiar setting, one of peace and comfort. Burial is also in accord with certain religious doctrine, particularly that of resurrection, where full body is necessary. More people are considering the environmental impact as part of their exit plan, which they want, above all, to be in alignment with their core values in life. Cost may play a small or a large part in their decision as well. Green burial offers all of these, plus the invitation to participate as much as desired during the process, from after-death care to shoveling in the dirt at burial.

 

Candace, Secretary of the Green Burial Council, is also the former Director of Planning and Cemetery Development at Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge and Watertown, MA. She began her Mount Auburn career as a volunteer in the mid-1990s mapping some of the 5,000+ trees throughout 175 acres. Mount Auburn Cemetery was certified by the GBC as a hybrid burial ground in 2014. She left Mount Auburn in March 2018 to dedicate her time to establishing green burial grounds throughout Massachusetts. She is the clerk for Green Burial Massachusetts, Inc. – a 501(c)(3) advocating on behalf of individuals who choose natural burial and providing technical assistance to municipalities, neighborhood groups, and non-profit organizations on creating green burial options in local cemeteries. .

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Theresa is the Executive Director of Kennebec Land Trust. She earned a Master's degree in Ecology and Environmental Science from the University of Maine and he undergraduate degree is in Environmental Resource Management from Penn State University. In 2009,Theresa and former KLT President Andrew Fisk, led an effort with Morten Moesswilde and Andrew Shultz of the Maine Forest Service to found the Kennebec Woodland Partnership, which now includes thirteen Partners. Theresa’s latest project with Ken Laustsen, also of the Maine Forest Service, is a research paper focused on the potential for developing and sustaining markets for Maine wood. Theresa and her husband, Jim, garden, raise chickens, split wood, and enjoy their 72 acres of woodland in Wayne. Whenever possible they spend time with their grown children


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Maine's Mortuary Trust Laws (2 ceus) 

 

A panel consisting of Robert Barnes, CFSP, of Jones, Rich & Barnes Funeral Home, VJ Chigas of Access Financial, Interment Trust Services and Katherine Griffin, Elder Care Attorney of Toole, Powers & Griffin will deliver a presentation on Mortuary Trust Laws, Mortuary Trust Elder Law, MaineCare requirements & Mortuary Trust Investments. Attendees will gain a better insight into the Maine laws governing mortuary trust and investments as well as the MaineCare system. There will be a question and answer period for open discussion with the panel experts. 

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Panelist: Robert Barnes, CFSP

Robert has worked in funeral service since 1974. He graduated from Eastern Nazarene College with a degree in business administration and New England Institute of Mortuary Science with a degree in mortuary science. He served in the U.S. Army from 1968 to 1971, including time in Mortuary Affairs in Seoul, Korea, during the Vietnam War. He was honorably discharged in 1971. 

In 1979, Robert became a certified funeral service practitioner with the Academy of Funeral Service Practice. In January 2017 he was recognized for 37 years of membership. He is a past president of the Maine Funeral Directors Association, past president of the Kiwanis Club of Portland and past president and District 1 director of the International Conference of Funeral Service Examining Boards. He was awarded an honorary doctor of law degree by New England Institute at Mount Ida College in 1989. Robert was appointed to the State Board of Funeral Service by the governor of Maine in 1994. He served as chairman for 17 years and remains a member of the board.

Disclaimer: Panelist Robert Barnes will be presenting based on his long time experience in the business on his own behalf and not on behalf of the Maine State Board of Funeral Service.


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Panelist: Victor J. “VJ” Chigas, CEO

VJ Chigas is Chief Executive Officer of Interment Trust Services and the Access Financial Group. His family owned business has been operating since the mid 1960’s by Victor Sr. and they are experts in their field. They have been serving the Maine funeral directors for 30 years. VJ provides a wealth of knowledge to funeral homes and cemeteries across the country in regards to investing and recordkeeping of “Death Care” assets. VJ joined Interment Trust in 1988 after attending the University of Utah. He holds a Principal's license as well as many other securities licenses. 

Access Financial Group is a Registered Broker Dealer as well a Registered Advisory firm. The firm helps individuals and business with their investment needs. Individual retirement plans, business retirement plans, 401-K, Sep Ira’s are examples. 

The Chigas family has enjoyed and feels fortunate to be a part of the Maine Family for so many years. VJ’s wife, Maria, just attended her 30th Bates college reunion.


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Panelist: Katherine Griffin, Attorney at Law

Katherine is a shareholder in the law firm of Toole, Powers & Griffin, P.A. She graduated from the College of the Atlantic in 2000 and the University of Maine School of Law in 2008. Prior to joining the firm she clerked for a superior court judge in Ketchikan, Alaska and worked for Disability Rights Maine and Legal Services for the Elderly. She is a native of Maine and lives in Portland. 



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Alternative Choices for Funeral Professionals (1 ceu) 

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