Marie is a Grief Coach and End-of-Life Specialist who walks the path of healing with women who have suffered a profound loss. She specializes in creating brave spaces for women to be seen, heard and witnessed in the fullness of their experience of loss. Her approach is based on the assumption that you are the expert of your own grief and my work focuses on guiding you back home to yourself so that you can find meaning in your life in the “after”. Having lost her partner to cancer, her guidance and coaching comes from both education and personal experience which allows her to deeply relate to her client’s experience of grief and loss. She is the founder of Empowered Through Grief, a coaching practice and community that provides a safe space for healing and post-traumatic growth for women grieving all types of loss.
Jason holds both a bachelor's degree in Civil Engineering as well as a Masters of Business Administration from Texas A&M University. He works as a Business Development Manager on AT&T’s connected car team. In the past, he has owned and operated two restaurants in the Austin area as well as an auto repair shop in north Dallas. Jason serves as a board member on the Coppell Education Foundation. His wife, April, is a diagnostician at Coppell Middle School North and together they have two sons, Alex who is freshman at Texas Tech University and Ryan who is a senior at Coppell high school. Carson's Village was created to fill that gap and to address the stress and challenge of that period of time. As of March 1, 2021, Carson’s Village has helped nearly 800 families and was named the Organization of the Year (small) by DCEO. In addition, Carson’s Village was selected by the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas to be in the 2020 cohort of the Social Innovation Accelerator program.
Facebook: Carson's Village
Kendall Lanning is a Certified Child Life Specialist, Certified Yoga Instructor, Energy Worker, Artist and Author/Illustrator. She finds her creative outlet through painting and artistic expression. She was intuitively guided to write and illustrate a children's book that will help children cope with death and grief. With an integration of her gifts, she listened to her calling to create The Fox and the Feather. The intention of this book is to enhance conversations of remembrance, in the hopes to give peace to the grieving heart in knowing that their loved one is still with them. Kendall is currently working on several children's books that open conversations to address difficult topics, while strengthen emotional and spiritual intelligence. She also facilities individualized therapeutic sessions though many unique healing modalities.
To Reach Kendall:
Claire Bidwell Smith is a therapist specializing in grief and the author of three books of nonfiction: The Rules of Inheritance, After This: When Life is Over Where Do We Go? and Anxiety: The Missing Stage of Grief. Claire offers numerous online programs for grief in addition to working with people one-on-one. Led by her own experiences with grief, and fueled by her work in hospice and private practice, Claire strives to provide support for all kinds of people experiencing all kinds of grief. In addition to having given dozens of talks on grief, Claire has written for and been featured in many publications including The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, Scientific American, The LA Times, MSNBC, The Chicago Tribune, Goop, Oprah Magazine, and Psychology Today. She deeply loves her work and is devoted to expanding the conversation about grief and loss.
To reach Claire:
Facebook : @clairebidwellsmith
Amanda Ferrat is the founder of Value Yourself Counseling and is a professional speaker, coach, and educator. She focuses on helping clients get back into the driver’s seat of their emotional well-being, grieving, and/or self-care. She has a variety of methods she utilizes with clients, including Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) Tapping. From this work, clients can step into an authentic life that is in full alignment with their values and needs and therefore, experience more emotional balance, peace, and freedom. Amanda is also extremely passionate about grief education and furthering the movement to make conversations around death, grief, and loss more acceptable and comfortable to have in our society. She has experienced a great deal of personal loss over her lifetime and wants to use those experiences to help others find more comfort, peace, and meaning in their grieving. Amanda hopes to help demystify and destigmatize grief and loss in order for people to have important conversations, do the necessary planning, and get the most out of life every single day because as she likes to joke, no one gets out of this thing called life alive.
To reach Amanda:
Application for Coaching: https://bit.ly/vycapplication
Instagram Handle: @valueyourselfcounseling
Facebook Business Page: https://www.facebook.com/valueyourselfcounseling
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/badasswomenbreakingbarriers
Wendy Andrew is a qualified Pet Bereavement Counsellor who studied with The International School for Canine Psychology and Behaviour Ltd. prior to opening The Scottish Pet Bereavement Counselling Service. Wendy initially studied pet bereavement counselling in order to support her dog walking clients however quickly realised that this service should be available to everyone everywhere and brought the business online. Having grown up in an agricultural area on the outskirts of Glasgow, Wendy has been a lifelong animal lover and with her parents being Kennel Club registered Labrador breeders, this really was a natural career path for her. Wendy has been a vegetarian since the age of 14 due to her love of animals and is an advocate for animal welfare. She is committed to providing a holistic service to her counselling clients and is also a qualified meditation teacher. She has studied various practices and techniques in order to support her clients through the grieving process so that that they can heal and perhaps open their hearts and homes again should they feel that is the right thing for them. In an effort to offer her services to everyone her book, How To Recover from Pet Loss: Supporting You on Your Journey to Acceptance.
In Stevie’s own words, ”Family is the most important thing in my life, especially the ones I spend all my time with, my 5 year old daughter, my 8 month old son and my husband. I was raised by the most amazing parents I could ever ask for, one that now lives in heaven and the other that now goes by Papa. I have two older protective sisters that I love very much. My mom was Italian, so my extended family is a huge part of me and I love that about my life. Second to family is my passion to help people! Help them heal, grow and reach their own personal definition of success. This is my work as a life coach, a place where I have never felt more aligned. A place you’ll find me most, outside of my home, is at Breathe yoga, where I teach and practice yoga. This is a major source of my healing, growth and inspiration in life! As I said relationships with people is very high on my list of things I value, and with that said, I have some of the most amazing friendships and a community of beautiful people that support me daily. I live for quotes and one of my favorites is ‘I have found that if you love life, life will love you back.’ I’m learning and practicing how to love life every day, every moment.”
Facebook: Stevie Fedele
Beth Castrodale worked as a newspaper reporter until her love of books led her to the publishing field. She was a senior editor at Bedford/St. Martin’s and is the founding editor of Small Press Picks. Her short fiction and essays have appeared in numerous publications, including Live Write Thrive, Printer’s Devil Review, the Smoky Blue Literary and Arts Magazine, and Writing and Wellness, which featured her article “How to Write Your Way Through Loss and Grief.”
Her debut novel, Marion Hatley, was a finalist for a Nilsen Prize for a First Novel from Southeast Missouri State University Press, and an excerpt from her second novel, In This Ground, was a shortlist finalist for a William Faulkner – William Wisdom Creative Writing Award. Her latest novel, I Mean You No Harm, is forthcoming from Imbrifex Books.
Sign up for Beth’s email newsletter, you’ll get a free copy of her novel Gold River.
To Contact Beth:
Rocky was born June 2015 and resides in Greece (suburb of Rochester, NY) with his “father” Mike, and “brothers” Michael & Jon. At home he enjoys playing tug of war and watching the critters in the back yard, though he is not a squirrel fan. He loves to sit on the lap of anyone who thinks they are going to watch TV and actually watches the TV himself. Like other dogs, he enjoys playing fetch and is always under foot. Rocky’s goal at work everyday is simple. He enjoys bringing comfort to those who have lost a loved one. He has quickly become the most popular member of the Bartolomeo & Perotto team. He has been “working” at the funeral home since 2016 and is more well known than any other staff member.
Michael Perotto, President, Funeral Director since 1988
Mike attended Canton College for Mortuary Science. After completing his residency he earned his funeral director’s license. Since then, he’s been growing the business with his dad, Phil, and brother, David. A large part of his commitment to improving funeral care is being involved in industry-related organizations. He has previously served as president of both the Preferred Funeral Directors International (PDFI) and the local Rochester Genesee Valley Funeral Directors Association. Mike is currently serving as a board member for the Greece Rotary. Mike has enjoyed watching his own sons, Michael and Jon grow into young men who are now creating their own distinct futures. Mike’s third “son,” Rocky is the family’s faithful companion. Aside from keeping lacrosse stats on the sidelines of his son’s games over the years, Mike is true outdoorsman who loves to hunt, hike, fish, or just sit around a campfire with friends. When he gets some spare time, he likes cooking and perfecting timing and flavors with his food smoker.
“It is our commitment to the Bartolomeo legacy, reaching back to 1922, that motivates us to continue to grow and improve.”
To Reach Mike Perotto:
NOTE: Dr. Jackie Black was also our Guest for E5 - DO I NEED PROFESSIONAL HELP?
Dr. Jackie Black helps rekindle relationships with loving, amazing but crazy, busy small business owners so they are lovers again. Also for the last 30 years, Dr. Jackie has been actively supporting grieving partners and family members in the cancer community and the Alzheimer community, and was on the frontline of the AIDS Pandemic serving men who were ill, and the partners, family members and medical teams of those who died.
Dr. Jackie also serves couples when one partner is living with life-threatening or chronic illness.
As the founder of DrJackieBlack.com, she currently helps clients in 8 time zones, has delivered her monthly relationship Tip Sheet to men and women in 38 countries, and has been featured on hundreds of radio shows and podcasts around the world.
HOPE EDELMAN has been writing, speaking, and leading workshops and retreats in the bereavement field for more than 25 years. She was 17 when she lost her mother to breast cancer and 40 when her father died, events that inspired her to offer grief education and support to those who cannot otherwise receive it.
Her work has been translated into 14 languages and published in 11 countries. In addition to The Aftergrief: Finding Your Way Along the Long Arc of Loss, Hope is the author of seven other nonfiction books, including Motherless Mothers and the memoir, The Possibility of Everything. Her first book, Motherless Daughters, was a #1 New York Times bestseller and appeared on multiple bestseller lists worldwide. She was the recipient of the 2020 Community Educator Award from the Association for Death Education and Counseling and has won a Pushcart Prize for her creative nonfiction.
In addition to writing and speaking, she is a certified Martha Beck Life Coach and also leads nonfiction workshops to help writers tell, revisit, and revise their stories of loss. Hope lives and works in Los Angeles and Iowa City.
To Contact Hope:
Marjorie Smith, LCSW, graduated from Roberts Wesleyan College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Organizational Management and returned to Roberts to complete her Masters of Social Work. While working in mental health as a therapist, she experienced Hospice as a family member when her father died with Hospice support. This experience fueled her desire to work with the dying. She transitioned to Hospice Social Work in 2010, where her role concentrated on supporting terminally ill patients as they navigated the last stage of their lives. She was drawn to Hospice because of the focus on dignity and comfort of the whole person: mind, body, and spirit. In 2019, she accepted the position of Executive Director of Aurora House, a two-bed Comfort Care Home (Hospice House) in Spencerport, NY. In her spare time, Marj also officiates wedding ceremonies as an ordained Minister.
Phone : 585-617-4863
Facebook: Aurora House (a Hospice House)
Using dynamism and authenticity, Archie champions mental health awareness worldwide at corporations and universities. He challenges people to rethink complicated and emotional topics like depression, suicide, alcohol and drug addiction. Through his company ArchieCares, LLC, he aims to reframe the narrative surrounding mental illness and addiction by facilitating honest and vulnerable conversations. He has provided leadership, mental health and alcohol & drug prevention education at corporations like Solenis and The Job Sauce, and college campuses including Clemson University, Iowa State University and The University of Southern California. Archie reaches individuals personally as he openly and honestly shares his own struggle with addiction and clinical depression. He weaves research of top therapists and addiction specialists into his storytelling, allowing audiences to understand the potential for loss and pain. Whether it's a conversation with corporate employees about mental health in the workplace or a student workshop on resilience, Archie delivers a vibrant mix of life lessons.
To Reach Archie, The Feelings Guy™ :
IG: @the archstar
Melissa was widowed overnight at the age of 44 when her husband Dave didn’t wake upon a cold Saturday morning in 2011. As a solo-parent to their two sons, Melissa knew she had to take care of herself first so she could care for her kids -they needed her support more than ever - so she began the work of processing her deep grief and practicing radical selfcare to move forward. Melissa has rebuilt her life and established - for the very first time - a deeper knowledge of herself. She is a testament to trusting her gut and standing behind her choices. She is happily remarried to her "Chapter Two", Sean, and they now call the Oregon coast home. Melissa’s purpose is living a joyful life & inspiring others.
To Reach Melissa:
Rev. Jennifer Schaus Green is an ordained elder in the Upper New York Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. She was ordained a Deacon in 1998 and an Elder in 2002. Rev. Green got her B.A. from Lycoming College, Williamsport, PA in Psychology and Religion and a Master of Divinity from Candler School of Theology, Emory University in Atlanta, GA. She has served various appointments within the United Methodist Church; Belfast UMC and Caneadea UMC, Lyndonville UMC and currently serves Hilton United Methodist Church since 2008.
To Reach Rev. Green:
Website: Hilton United Methodist Church
Crystal Webster is the founder and Chief Solace Officer of Sharing Solace, author of Confessions of a Griever: Turning a Hot Mess into an Haute Message (Laughable Lessons for When life Just Sucks), and most importantly, she is Maddie’s mama. Sharing Solace helps grievers grieve and lovers love their griever by wrapping our meaningful and tangible gifts in a community of love and support.
When her Madelyn died in her arms just hours after she was born Crystal wanted to die too. Her story of love and loss is not all that unique; and at the same time, she found herself isolated and debilitated from the grief. She shares her story to encourage others to do the same. Whatever your grief may be please 'Remember. You're not alone.'
Visit Crystal at SharingSolace.com
Michele Allman, LMSW (Licensed Master Social Worker), is the Bereavement Coordinator for UR Medicine Home Care and Hospice. She has worked in Hospice for the past fourteen years, twelve of them as the Bereavement Coordinator. She facilitates grief support groups and meets with families and individuals on a 1:1 basis to offer support and guidance through the grieving process. In addition, she is the cofounder and director of an annual three-day children's summer bereavement camp, Camp Heartstrings/Camp Dreams. Michele is a Master Level Social Worker and completed her degree at Syracuse University.
Multiple award-winning author, speaker, and grief specialist Gary Roe is a compassionate and trusted voice in grief-recovery who has been bringing comfort, hope, encouragement, and healing to hurting, wounded hearts for more than 30 years. Gary is the author of more than a dozen books, including the award-winning bestsellers Shattered: Surviving the Loss of a Child, Comfort for Grieving Hearts, Heartbroken: Healing from the Loss of a Spouse, and Teen Grief: Caring for the Grieving Teenage Heart.
Gary has been featured on Dr. Laura, Wellness.com, Beliefnet, CBN, The Daily Positive, Thrive Global, and other major media and has well over 700 grief-related articles in print. He is a popular keynote, conference, and seminar speaker at a wide variety of venues. A former college minister, missionary in Japan, entrepreneur in Hawaii, and pastor in Texas and Washington, Gary now serves as a writer, speaker, chaplain, and grief counselor with Hospice Brazos Valley in central Texas.
Gary loves being a husband and father. He has seven adopted children, including three daughters from Colombia. He enjoys hockey, corny jokes, good puns, and colorful Hawaiian shirts. Gary and his wife Jen and family live in Texas.
Purchase Gary's book Surviving the Holidays Without You, Navigating Grief During Special Seasons (Good Grief Series, Book 1) by visiting our SHOP.
Visit Gary at www.garyroe.com
Dr. Bill Webster is the founder and executive Director of the Centre for the Grief Journey. Widowed in 1983, Bill struggled to come to terms with his own loss, as well as the task of bringing up his two sons, who were 9 and 7 when their mother died. After graduating from the University of Toronto with his doctorate in 1990, Bill began facilitating grief support programs in numerous communities.
Dr Bill also conducts many professional seminars and educational programs on the topics of grief and loss both in North America and in Britain. He has authored numerous books as well as many articles and a 3 DVD series entitled ‘Grief Matters.” Dr Webster produced and hosted a nationally broadcast weekly television program in Canada entitled “Living with Loss”.
Dr. Bill also has a very innovative website at www.griefjourney.com. He has recently developed a brand new concept in grief support on a web portal and brings grief support to a new generation on Facebook and Twitter.
Dr. Webster is a member of the Association for Death Education and Grief Counselling, who recently awarded him their prestigious Fellow in Thanatology from University of Illinois in recognition of his work and his contribution to the field of grief counseling.
Dr. Webster brings a unique blend of personal experience, academic education and many years of practical application to his work. Acknowledged as a dynamic, personable and practical speaker, Dr. Webster combines his own story with his knowledge and sense of humor to effectively communicate his message.
Facebook: The Grief Journey
Amanda Ferrat is the founder of Value Yourself Counseling and is a professional speaker, coach, and educator. She focuses on helping clients get back into the driver’s seat of their emotional well-being, grieving, and/or self-care. Amanda takes an intuitive approach to the work she does with clients. She has a variety of methods she utilizes with clients, including Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) Tapping. From this work, clients can step into an authentic life that is in full alignment with their values and needs and therefore, experience more emotional balance, peace, and freedom.
Amanda is also extremely passionate about grief education and furthering the movement to make conversations around death, grief, and loss more acceptable and comfortable to have in our society. She has experienced a great deal of personal loss over her lifetime and wants to use those experiences to help others find more comfort, peace, and meaning in their grieving. Amanda hopes to help demystify and destigmatize grief and loss in order for people to have important conversations, do the necessary planning, and get the most out of life every single day because as she likes to joke, no one gets out of this thing called life alive.
Link to schedule consultation: https://vycscheduling.as.me/grief
Instagram Handle: @valueyourselfcounseling
Facebook Business Page: https://www.facebook.com/valueyourselfcounseling