altProfessional Service Awards

Golden Light Award | Community Service Award | Exemplary Service Award

By any measure, OGR members are stand-outs in terms of commitment to their profession, their families and their communities.

OGR's award and scholarship programs enable the association to acknowledge member achievements and support the career goals of promising mortuary science students. Winners are acknowledged in The Independent®, on the website and at the Annual Conference.

For questions, contact the Education Department, (800) 637-8030.

Golden Light Awardalt

In 2002, OGR instituted its most prestigious award, the Golden Light Award, to salute professional excellence exemplified by individual members who have inspired others by their commitment to service.

As an OGR member, you have opportunity each year to nominate a fellow member who has distinguished him- or herself in the funeral profession through OGR involvement, community service or volunteer activities that demonstrate "service measured not by gold, but by the Golden Rule."  

Nominate Here

Current Golden Light Award Winner

OGR is privileged to bestow its 2016 Golden Light Award to John Kreidler.

About John Kreidler:

His civic involvement has included serving as a committee member, board member, and chairman for the city of McAllen, the McAllen Chamber of Commerce, McAllen Rotary Club, St. John’s Episcopal Church, Boy Scouts, American Heart Association, and the History Museum of South Texas. John has also served on OGR’s Board of Directors as well as several of its committees and as a Regional Chair. John and his wife Kay have three children.

OGR President, Skip Urban said, “John Kreidler is a servant leader, who demonstrates steadfastness in all he pursues. He is a man known for his perseverance, even in the midst of life’s challenges, whether they be personal or professional.”


Past Golden Light Award Winners

Glenn P. Taylor

Glenn Funeral Home & Crematory
Owensboro, Ky.
William Brock
Vander Plaat Funeral Home
Wyckoff, NJ
Bonnie Helweg-Campbell

Helweg Funeral Service
Jenkintown, Pa.
Robin Williams

R. Lee Williams & Son Funeral Home & Crematory
St. Petersburg, FL.
Billy K. Wages

Wages & Sons Funeral Home
Stone Mountain, Ga.
Guy Linnemann
Linnemann Funeral Homes
Erlanger, Ky.
Thomas P. Lynch

Lynch & Sons Funeral Directors
Milford, Mich.
Jeffrey S. Wages
Wages & Sons-Gwinnett Chapel
Lawrenceville, GA.
Michael G. Butler

Livingston-Butler-Volland Funeral Home &
Cremation Center
Hastings, Neb.
Randal Earl
Brintlinger and Earl Funeral Homes
Decatur, Ill.
Harold Lake

Rindt-Erdman Funeral Home
Arkansas City, Kan.
John Dallas Slack, CFSP
Slack Funeral Home, Ellicott City, MD
Charles Rader

LeRoy Rader Funeral Home
Longview, Texas

Golden Rule Community Service Award

Launched in 2008, the Golden Rule Community Service Award singles out a member firm for outstanding service to the community performed during the calendar year.

Nominate Herealt

2016 Winner:

Martin Funeral, Cremation, & Tribute Services, Mt. Morris, Mich.
Adam Martinalt

October is deemed “Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month,” so Martin Funeral, Cremation, & Tribute Services dedicated that month to supporting all families who have suffered this type of loss in their community in Michigan. Since 2007, throughout the month of October, they offer three separate events to support not only the families they’ve served, but all families in the communities where their funeral homes are located.

These events include:

1) An ongoing “Remembrance Candle Showcase”
2.) A local media and social media campaign designed to bring awareness to “Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month,” culminating in the candle lightning on October 15th, which is considered “Remembrance Day.”
3.) The annual hosting of the “Fly & Remember” event which offers activities for adults and children who have lost loved ones.

Past Golden Rule Community Service Award Winners

2015 Oliverie Funeral Home, Manchester Township, NJ

2014 Brunswick Memorial Home, East Brunswick, NJ

2013 Gardinier Funeral Home, Franklin, Penn.

2012 Joseph Pray, Pray Funeral Home, Charlotte, Mich.

2011 Miles T. Martin Funeral Home, Mt. Morris, Mich.

2010 Brunswick Funeral Home, East Brunswick, NJ

2009 Arnett & Steele Funeral Home, Pineville, Ky.

Exemplary Service Awards

The Exemplary Service Awards recognize Golden Rule firms that have displayed outstanding professionalism and exemplary service.

The Exemplary Service Award is given to the top three nominees every year chosen by OGR members and is based on feedback OGR receives through the Family Contact Program. The Family Contact Program is an exclusive OGR member benefit that gathers feedback from families that participants have done services for.

The criteria for receiving an Exemplary Service Award are 1) Your funeral home must be a current participant in OGR's Family Contact Program and 2) Your funeral home must have received a comment or comments that represent family satisfaction with your services and indicate that the funeral home performed in an exemplary manner going above and beyond the expected. Visit for more information about the Family Contact Program and how to join

Contact the Family Contact Program Manager  (800) 637-8030 with any questions.

2017 Nominees | 2016 Winners | 2016 Honorable Mentions | Past Winners

2017 Exemplary Service Awards Nominees | List | Press Release


2016 Winners Circle


alt Caldwell & Cowan Funeral Home, Covington, GA | Press Release

altStrunk Funeral Home, Vero Beach, FL | Press Release

altAhlgrim Funeral Home, Elmhurst, IL | Press Release


2016 Honorable Mentions | List | Press Release


2015 Winners Circle

Boone Family Funeral Home & Cremation Services, West Jefferson, NC

Plummer Funeral Home, Litchfield, IL

Schuyler Hill Funeral Home, Bronx, NY