Meet The TEAM

Matt Kreidenweis


Matt started working with Forethought in 1988. He was a Regional Coordinator, Tennessee Account Executive, and National Accounts Representative. In 1997 he became a partner in IFPA.

He is responsible for strategic planning, marketing plans, and funeral home recruiting for the Southeast and Mid-West region. He has been a speaker and trainer for ICCFA over the years and enjoys working with firms on Seminar programs.

Matt and his wife Pam married in 1993 and have three sons, Kyle, Nathan and Matthew. They enjoy sports and many outdoor activities together such as hunting, fishing, hiking, camping and skiing.

Doug Hoog


Doug, a funeral industry veteran (beginning in 1993), worked for Forethought Financial Services in numerous roles including sales territories from California to Indiana and working with Forethought Federal Savings Bank. He also managed the sales force for Memory Gardens Management of Indianapolis, IN.

He joined IFPA in 2004 as a regional partner and became full partner in 2008. His focus is Indiana, Ohio, Missouri, and Kentucky expansion. Doug works closely with strategic planning for training, the IFPA database development, and the marketing strategies that funeral homes use when working with IFPA.

Doug and his wife, Angie, married in 1996 and have three sons, Colton, Corey, and Cooper. In his spare time Doug enjoys sporting activities and taking care of his animals.

Fayna Edens

Quality Assurance Manager

Fayna joined IFPA in January 2012. She is responsible for overseeing all IFPA sales support systems. Maintaining the IFPA Database Marketing program, managing the Pathways mailing program, organizing seminars for counselors, creating custom mailers and surveys, are just a few of her many responsibilities.

She now hosts live webinar training on the database several times a month. She is a key team player in all the support that IFPA offers funeral homes and counselors. Fayna was born in Winchester, TN where the home office is located.

Fayna has two children, Joseph and Emily and four grandsons, Christian, Max, Ethan, and Jett Rylan, and one granddaughter, Keagan Blair. In her spare time Fayna enjoys cooking, playing with the grandsons and spending time with her extended family and friends.

She loves working with the counselors knowing that in some small way she is assisting families at one of their greatest times of need.

Jeff Finney

Total Solutions Director

Jeff began his career in advertising and marketing in 1988. Since that time he has produced award-winning campaigns for clients large and small. More important than the awards are the results his clients have achieved.

Jeff’s attention to detail is surpassed only by his desire for the success of the firms he represents. In 2012, Jeff joined with IFPA to create IFPA Total Solutions — a full-service, in-house advertising and marketing agency providing services to IFPA members only. IFPA Total Solutions has been able to successfully guide and direct the marketing efforts for many of our funeral homes.

Jeff and his wife, Lori, reside in Middle Tennessee near Nashville. When not working with clients, you will most likely find Jeff working on his golf game.

Kurt Rosenacker

National Partner

Kurt is a 5th generation funeral director from Cincinnati, OH, where his family owns two funeral homes. He has two sons, Jack and Finn. He is a 2005 graduate of Oakland University where he played baseball and majored in History. After graduation, he pursued a career in coaching and took his first job as an assistant baseball coach at Tennessee Tech University in Cookeville, TN.

He decided to move back to Cincinnati and that’s when Kurt decided to enter the family business and go to mortuary school. He graduated from the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science in 2012 Magna Cum Laude.

Upon graduation, Kurt found his niche in funeral preplanning. He is a $million producer who enjoys helping other pre-need counselors find success in the business.

When Kurt is not working he enjoys wrestling with his boys and going to Cincinnati Reds games.


Dianna Budd

Director of Training

Dianna has been an Advance Planning Advisor for over 26 years. Prior to persuing her career in the funeral industry, Dianna taught school and coached for 10 years. Being among the first individuals to find great satisfaction and success in assisting families take care of their prearrangement plans, she also realized that as part of her success came the responsibilities to assist others enter this very unique career path.

During the past 26 years, Dianna has coached and mentored many individuals. She continues to use her professional education, training and experience as a Trainer for IFPA. Along with Phil Fought and the IFPA administrative team, Dianna was instrumental in developing a training program that helps new advisors obtain the skills and direction they need to be successful and become the “Best in the Business.”

Dianna also works individually with firms and advisors who need weekly marketing, program development and supervision. Helping others is a true passion.

Phil Fought

Boot Camp & Field Trainer / Counselor
Phil started as a preneed counselor with IFPA in 2000. During his sales career he has been awarded the “Top Gun” award 7 times, topping $1,000,000 in annual sales numerous times. Along with his busy sales schedule, Phil works as a field trainer for IFPA to help new counselors become familiar with the database system, and is eager to share his knowledge and expertise with new counselors.

Before coming to IFPA, Phil was a Corporate Personnel Director for a local marshmallow manufacturing company for 18 years. He is very involved with his community and has served on his Church Board as a Deacon, McCray Hospital Board, United Way Co-Chair for Noble County, and also on the West Noble School Board for 8 years as Vice President and President.

Phil and his wife, Kathy, reside near Wolcottville Indiana on Dallas Lake. They have 3 grown children with 10 grandchildren. Therefore, balancing family and career is very important. Phil enjoys family time, golf, lake living, and following college sports, specifically the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.

Jayson Davis

Regional Partner and Co-founder of Jang Consulting

Jayson is proud and thankful to be part of the IFPA team through his advance planning consulting with independently owned funeral homes and his involvement with the IFPA MediaPath social media management program. Jayson brings 12 years of funeral service experience and 14 years of social media experience to the table for IFPA.

Serving families through removals, preneeds, at-needs, and officiating life celebrations allows Jayson the perfect avenue for effective communication with people from all walks of life. He takes great pride in helping professionals enhance their online presence for the families served.

He spent most of his professional career in leadership roles where he learned the importance of excellent customer service and reputation management. He has been instrumental in creating sales strategies for the funeral industry and promotions for non-profit organizations.

Jayson attended Motlow State Community College (Communications major) and Middle Tennessee State University (Public Relations major) and is Social Media Marketing Certified.

He enjoys life in Tennessee with his wife, Teresa, and their five children, one great-grandchild, and a couple of fur-babies. Jayson enjoys traveling the Southeast as he gets to make new friends and demonstrate the value offerings that IFPA shares with its funeral service clients.

Tina Shang

Co-Founder Jang Consulting

Tina is a Social Media Consultant, Speaker, Educator, and Co-owner of Jang Consulting. She is proud to be part of the IFPA team through a strategic marketing partnership with Jang Consulting.

Tina is known as a digital pioneer in her field with 20 years of experience, she knows how to leverage new and emerging technology to establish clients as industry leaders.

She thrives in the ever-changing digital landscape and has a deep love for developing social business strategies to help small business owners flourish in a digital world.

Tina graduated from Middle Tennessee State University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mass Communication with a focus in New Media and a Masters Degree from the University of Memphis in Instructional Design Technology and Curriculum Leadership.

She loves life in Tennessee with her husband Mark, their five children, four grandchildren, two dogs and four cats.

Jason Troyer

Founder of Mt. Hope Grief Services

Dr. Jason Troyer earned his doctorate in Counseling Psychology at the University of Kansas and is an Associate Professor of Psychology. He is an engaging speaker and published author on grief and has provided counseling for bereaved individuals.

Dr. Troyer is the founder of Mt Hope Grief Services which provides aftercare products, training seminars, and consulting services. His goal is to help funeral professionals serve their grieving families with accurate, comforting information. He is a member of the Association for Death Education and Counseling and is certified in Thanatology: Death, Dying, and Bereavement.

Jason enjoys spending time with his wife and daughters in his free time.

Laura Nobbe

Heartland Preneed

I have been in the death care profession since 1990. I started as production coordinator at Franklin Casket Company in Brookville, IN. When the casket company was sold I was offered a position selling caskets throughout the tri-state area.

From there I was offered a position selling prearranged funeral plans with Carriage Services in Cincinnati, OH. I worked my way up as a regional manager for Carriage Services. After 6 years the preneed program changed and the position was eliminated.

In 2001, the opportunity arose to purchase a funeral home. I owned and operated this funeral home for 5 years. Then sold the business but remained with the company for several years.

In 2007 Homesteaders Life Company offered me the opportunity to return to the prearrangement arena full time with their HSMP program. I am now in 5 states, successfully growing my customer’s individual preneed programs.

I am committed to help build your business on the history of your success. I will build long term beneficial relationships that will increase your preneed sales. I offer personal attention, knowledge, integrity and have a strong work ethic. I will become a trusted advisor through my experience in casket manufacturing, casket sales, preneed sales, preneed sales management, funeral home ownership, management of a high volume funeral home and preneed marketing

Fred Beeson

Beeson Consulting

Fred is a 2nd generation funeral insurance agency owner of Beeson Consulting. He and his wife Rachel live on High Rock Lake in Lexington NC and have 5 children and 2 grandchildren. He graduated from the Elon University School of Business in 1973, earning two degrees in Economics and Business Administration.

He was a member of the Elon football team all four years. He began his career in the funeral industry in 1973 working for Ridge Funeral Home in Asheboro NC. During his tenure he served as an apprentice funeral director, mortician and final expense representative.

In 1975 he returned to his family firm and served as an assistant to his father Joe Beeson for 5 years. In 1980 he joined Ketchum Inc., an international advertising and promotion firm in Pittsburg Pa. In 1985 he was promoted to senior vice president and managing partner of southeast operations headquartered in Charlotte NC and was later named to the executive committee.

In 2005 after a 25 year career in advertising, he returned to the family insurance agency and become managing partner in 2007. He transformed the agency into an innovative funeral support consulting firm utilizing tools learned while at Ketchum Inc.

Today, Beeson Consulting provides consulting services throughout the Carolina’s and has merged their family consulting firm with Independent Funeral Planning Alliance, (IFPA) out of Tennessee to offer greater marketing opportunities in social media management, data based marketing and agent recruitment.

Sean Patterson

IFPA Regional Director and Trainer

Sean became involved in funeral service in 1988 and has devoted her career to working with families before and after a death. At 17, the sudden death of her 46-year old father was a turning point in her life. Upon learning the benefits of preplanning – Sean knew she had a story to tell.

Her 30-year background includes work as a field representative for 2 preneed funding companies, a family service counselor at several funeral homes and cemeteries and a cremation society.

In 2014, Sean accepted a position with Austin & Bell Funeral Home (Tennessee’s oldest funeral home established in 1842) as a Family Service Counselor. She is a licensed funeral director and is an NFDA Certified Preplanning Counselor.

Sean grew up in Middle Tennessee – graduating from Battle Ground Academy and attended MTSU. She has been a life-long member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Franklin.

Sean is a charter member of the IFPA “$Million Dollar” Club. She is passionate about helping other counselors reach their potential and serves as an IFPA Regional Director and Trainer for firms in the TN/KY area.

Ron Lee

Regional Partner

Ron Lee started in the sales side of the funeral industry in 1990 as a sales counselor. He quickly moved into management with SCI over their St Louis and western Chicago region.

After achieving Century Club status and being inducted into the hall of fame with SCI, Ron felt the need to move back to Georgia to be closer to his family.

He joined IFPA in 2016 using his funeral director and sales experience of 36 years to serve independent funeral homes and the families they serve. He loves sharing his passion to serve others by protecting families and business partners through education, training and speaking engagements.

After his education at Texas A&M he married Rebecca in 1981. they have four children and 5 grandchildren, and hope for more grands! They enjoy spending time with their family as well as traveling, home projects, hunting, fishing and many other outdoor activities.

James Ruggerio

Lakeland Preneed Planning

James began his career as a Virginia Funeral Service Licensee and Insurance Agent in 1998, and then began specializing in Advance Planning in 2000. As Director of Advance Planning, he was responsible for daily sales production and assisted with marketing, advertising, recruitment and training of new agents.

Over the next several years he served in the role of sales agent, area sales manager, regional sales director and following a company merger was sales manager.

In 2012, he joined a large preneed insurance company as Director of Business Development. It was during this time he determined the years spent assisting families and agents while running many different sales programs had prepared him to start a third party marketing company.

In 2016 Lakeland Preneed Planning llc. was formed to assist with the following: 1. Protecting and growing your place in the market 2. Minimizing the “maybe” families 3. Provide programs that align with the culture of your funeral home and meet your goals. As a marketing partner with IFPA and Homesteaders Life Co., Lakeland Preneed Planning licensed in VA, TN, NC, SC and Fl.

James is married to Melissa, has four daughters and 4 grandchildren. In his spare time, he enjoys bass fishing and building custom fishing rods.

Sheryl Zuker

Zuker Group Consulting

Sheryl Zuker began her Passion and Career in funeral service in 1991 first
working with SCI in Oklahoma in Sales and Management with both Cemeteries and Funeral Homes. In 2001 she began working as a Funeral Account Sales Manager with a National PreNeed Insurance Company.

Over her career, she has won numerous Regional and National awards for
Sales, Family Service and Administrative Excellence including Both Sales
Manager and General Manager of the Year Awards. Sheryl has worked in
several funeral homes with pre-need sales, assisting funeral directors from
the first call all the way through the funeral service and assisting the families with aftercare, giving her a great understanding of the inner working of the funeral home. She became a certified funeral celebrant to further aid funeral homes with new ideas for personalized services.

Sheryl started Zuker Group Consulting in 2018 and has consistently grown
with helping funeral homes reach goals by developing marketing plans
and preneed programs. Being a partner with IFPA and Homesteaders has
given many Opportunities to offer more products and new ideas to her
funeral home clients.

Sheryl has been involved as an officer in the Oklahoma Funeral Sales Supply club for many years and is currently the Secretary/ Treasurer, and she is also very active with the Oklahoma Funeral Directors Association, Zuker Group Consulting is the only Marketing/ Consulting company endorsed by the Oklahoma State association. Currently, Sheryl is working with Funeral Homes in Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, and Texas.

Steve Paris

Zuker Group Consulting

Background: • Education- received a B.A. In Psychology from the University of Central Oklahoma, • Received additional hours beyond undergraduate work in the area of Human Relations from the University of Oklahoma. • Earned FLMI (Fellow, Life Management Institute) designation through LOMA (Life Office Management Association).

Employment: • Special Projects Director and Counselor with Community Council of Central Oklahoma • Special Projects Director for Community Action Programs of Oklahoma City and County • Insurance Sales with Mid Continent Life Insurance Co., Globe Life, United American Life. • Director of Marketing and Sales with Directors Life Assurance Co. • Consultant/Sales & Marketing with Thomas & Associates since 2007. • Consultant/Sales & Marketing with Zuker Group/IFPA-2018 Over 30 years in the preneed industry with experience in assisting funeral homes in all aspects of preneed Sales and marketing, aftercare, counselor training, training in product utilization and lead development (to include social media (Facebook) advertising for name recognition and lead conversion.

Experienced in community presentations and seminar development. My main goal (with the assistance of our very capable Zuker Group Team) is to design and help implement those programs and activities that will assist the funeral home directors and leaders in retaining current clients and growing their current market share.

Ron Prevost

Regional Partner

Ron started his career in 1983 and has 35 years in the industry. He worked with Restland of Dallas as a top salesperson and became a top sales manager winning many awards for top volume.

Ron became VP of sales Tex Division and then moved to California in 1996 and worked with SCI, handling 11 mortuaries and 16 agents. He became top group(pod) for preneed sales in California.

In 2005, Ron opened his own group, RPA Associates. The group represents 54 mortuaries in California with 33 active agents and 7-8 Million in Insurance sales per year.

Chester Henderson

Henderson Preneed Consulting

Chester Henderson is a second-generation funeral director who has worked with a variety of funeral homes. From small to large including corporate firms, his varied experiences as a preneed funeral director have prepared and uniquely positioned him to assist and develop preneed programs for all. This enables him to understand the complexities of a large firm and the needs of a smaller firm, while implementing a preneed program to ensure market growth.

Chester’s career has centered around service. He is a United States Air Force veteran, a high school track coach for over twenty years, a licensed funeral director and has served on the Greenville County Medical Examiner Commission. Chester was born in Tampa, Florida where his father and uncle founded and co-owned Wilson Funeral Home but has lived and worked in upstate South Carolina since 1982.

He is married to Orchid and they have three sons; Tristan, Vyron and Nikolus, and five grandchildren; Talan, Eliyana, Vayden, Valynn and Vyanna.

Susan Taylor

Susan started as an Advance Planning Advisor with IFPA in 2010 helping families in Northern Indiana with preplanning and assisting families with care after a death.  Educating the community and helping families make informed decisions is key to her success.  Providing seminars, workshops and speaking engagements in the communities she serves.

During her sales career she was awarded the Dennis G. Kerschwen Persistency Award in 2015.  Serving the community as a member of Kiwanis International since 2014 and a member of Lakeville United Methodist Church.

Prior to starting her career in the funeral industry, she was a Direct Sales and Training manager for 9 years.  A graduate of Otsego High School and Kalamazoo Valley Community College she grew up in Southwestern Michigan. Susan and her husband Todd married in 1992 and have 2 daughters, Allyson and Emilee.  She enjoys traveling and spending time with family.


We are here for you

Our goal is to contract with independent funeral homes to market and grow their pre-need sales through relationship marketing and constant communication with the community.

204 Old Decherd Road
Winchester, TN 37398


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