SOUTHINGTON – Executive Director of the Connecticut Funeral Directors Association (CFDA) John F. Cascio will give the keynote address at Lincoln College of New England’s 51st annual commencement on May 11.
The commencement will take place at 6 p.m. at the campus at 2279 Mount Vernon Road, Southington. Some 168 graduates will receive their degrees and certificates during the 90-minute ceremony. In the event of rain, the commencement will be held at Southington High School at 720 Pleasant Street, Southington.
“This year we celebrate our 51st anniversary,” said Dr. Jim Vernon. President of the college. “We are pleased to have Mr. John F. Cascio to celebrate this anniversary and provide our graduation address this year.”
Cascio was born and raised in Wethersfield and still resides there with his wife Kathi. He graduated from Eastern Connecticut State University with a bachelor’s degree in Education and studied for a graduate degree in Education from Southern Connecticut State University.
Cascio began his career as an elementary education teacher in the New Haven public schools and later taught in Newington and Wethersfield. He then worked as the Executive Director of the Naugatuck Day Care Center. All these positions touched children’s lives within a classroom environment.
In 1987, Cascio transitioned his career into the association management of funeral service, a profession that was dramatically expanding its outreach and visibility. For more three decades, he has served as Executive Director of the Connecticut Funeral Directors Association (CFDA), a non-profit trade association comprised of 220 funeral homes. The mission of the CFDA is “To Advance the Profession of Funeral Service in Connecticut through Public Awareness, Education, Advocacy and High Ethical Standards”. The statewide organization is an active member of the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA).
Over the years, Cascio has been recognized nationally and locally for his management of the CFDA. Most recently, he was honored with the 2017 Brass Apple Award, presented by the Council of Funeral Association Executives (CFAE) and his peers across the U.S. In 2013, Connecticut Society of Association Executives (CSAE) presented him with its Executive Director of the Year Award – one of the highest forms of recognition bestowed upon an executive director. Under his leadership, the Connecticut Funeral Directors Association also received the CSAE’s annual Community Service Award in both 2006 and 2010. In 2013, the CFDA was named “Business of the Year” by the Wethersfield Chamber of Commerce.
Cascio has volunteered in his community in several capacities since 1989 and was honored with a Community Award from the Wethersfield Parent Teacher Organization for his civic involvement, leadership and spirit. He currently holds the position of chair of the Wethersfield Board of Education.
Cascio and the CFDA have been involved with Lincoln College of New England’s (and before that Briarwood College) career fairs for students who are pursuing careers in Mortuary Science. Lincoln College of New England, formerly Briarwood College, offers associate and bachelor degrees. The most popular programs include dental hygiene and mortuary science, and is the only college with a mortuary science program in the state of Connecticut.
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or firstname.lastname@example.org.