Young Funeral Directors

Mission Statement

"Inspiring young funeral directors in Ohio through social, educational and interactive programs while promoting excellence in funeral service."

Bailey R. Byrd, Columbus
Jenn M. Schlosser, Wapakoneta

Joseph P. Carrier, Jr., Boardman
Holly R. Colwell, Columbus
Kyle A. Eveland, Crooksville
Jordan Hart, Rittman
Myles Kalina-Hammond, Strongsville
Joshua Majors, Springfield
Elizabeth Mencke, Parma
Lindsey Rathje, Dayton
Kurt A. Seeley, West Liberty
Devin R. Woodyard, Columbus

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Annual Distinguished Service Award 


  • Nominee must be an OFDA member in good standing and under 40 years of age in the year he or she is nominated.
  • Nominee may not have previously received this award.
  • Self-nominations will not be accepted.
  • It is the nominator’s responsibility to summarize the nominee’s achievements, accomplishments and impact on others in sufficient detail to document why this nominee should be recognized for outstanding service in the funeral service profession.


This annual award is to be presented to the Ohio Funeral Directors Association Young Funeral Director who meets the following qualifications:

  • Exhibit outstanding citizenship in the community; serving the community in which he/she lives and/or works by assisting with activities or organizations that strengthen and improve the community.
  • Exhibit a level of professionalism that exemplifies the attributes of a professional funeral director and maintains the confidence of the personal and business relationships with those he/she serves.
  • Supports his/her professional organizations in their efforts to improve the standards of funeral service and to lend his/her voice in censure against those who would deter these efforts.

Submission Instructions:

  • All nominations must be received by OFDA prior to March 1, 2023, during the period December 1, 2022 through February 28, 2023 for consideration.
  • Nominations must be submitted through our online form.
  • Only one candidate nomination per submission form.

We suggest you draft your answers in a Word document before submitting your nomination online. For your convenience, the nomination questions are listed below and we ask that each response is 150 words or less:

  • Describe how the nominee has demonstrated outstanding citizenship in the community. This answer should reflect previous or ongoing contributions of service to the community in which he/she lives and provide examples of involvement within activities or organizations that strengthen and improve the community.
  • Describe how the nominee has displayed an exceptional level of professionalism and leadership qualities within funeral service and has maintained the confidence of the personal and business relationships with those he/she serves.
  • Describe how the nominee supports professional organizations in their efforts to improve the standards of funeral service and lends his/her voice in censure against those who deter these efforts, citing specific examples and/or situations.
  • Describe any additional supporting information that you believe important when reviewing this nominee for consideration for this award.

Should you have questions or prefer an alternate submission method, please contact OFDA Committee Staff liaison, Andrew Allman at

For examples of ideal submission content, please  CLICK HERE.

Rules of Procedure and Operation

Nominations for the Distinguished Service Award can be made to OFDA by colleagues, mentors, managers or supervisors of nominees. Award winner is selected by members of the following: 

  • OFDA Young Funeral Directors Committee
  • The OFDA Board of Directors 
  • Executive Director of OFDA

*If nominated, members of the YFD Committee and OFDA Board of Directors must recuse themselves from group that selects award winner. 

  • The top three (3) scored candidates will receive a complimentary OFDA convention single-day registration in the year selected and will be recognized during the Awards Ceremony.
  • Award will be presented and announced at the OFDA Convention and Exhibition during the Awards Ceremony each year at the annual convention to the selected recipient, and the recipient’s name will be added to the permanent Distinguished Service Award Plaque on display at the OFDA office.
  • The selected recipient will receive $500 towards an OFDA continuing education course or funeral industry convention in hopes of encouraging their continued growth as a funeral professional.
  • A press release will be prepared and made available to award recipient and will be shared within OFDA media network.


Awards are provided at the discretion of the Ohio Funeral Directors Association. OFDA has the right to deny applicant an award if qualification standards are not met.

The Ohio Funeral Directors Association treats all distinguished service award applicants without regard to race, sex, color, national origin or ancestry, religion, political affiliation, veteran status, disability or handicap, affectional or sexual orientation, or marital status.

Submission Period is NOW OPEN. Nominations will be accepted December 1, 2022 - February 28, 2023.



Award Recipients

Roger D. Carson Jr.

2023: Roger D. Carson, Jr. of The House of Day Funeral Services, Toledo

Katie Mackoway

2022: Katie V. Mackoway of Stubbs-Conner Funeral Home, Waynesville

Elizabeth J. Woodward

2021: Elizabeth J. Woodward of Hoskins Funeral Home, Lebanon

Jay J. Foster 

2020Jay J. Foster of J.E. Foster Funeral Home, Toronto

Stephanie R. Dyer

2019: Stephanie R. Dyer of Cahall Funeral Home, Mt. Orab