News & Media

Press Releases

« Go Back

For Immediate Release

08.14.2018

Governor Hutchinson Announces Appointments To New Board That Oversees Funeral Industry

LITTLE ROCK – Governor Asa Hutchinson today announced the names of his eight appointees to the new State Board of Embalmers, Funeral Directors, Cemeteries, and Burial Services, which assumed oversight of the funeral industry on July 1.

Act 788 of 2017 merged three autonomous boards – Cemetery, Burial Association, and Embalmers and Funeral Directors – into the single State Board of Embalmers, Funeral Directors, Cemeteries, and Burial Services. The board falls under the oversight of the State Insurance Department.

The law requires that the board include two licensed embalmers/funeral directors, two owners or operators of a licensed perpetual care cemetery, two people engaged in the operation of a burial association; and two consumer representatives, including one person to represent elderly consumers.

The appointees are:

Licensed embalmer/funeral director:

Chuck Dearman, Monticello. Appointment expires July 1, 2020.
Billy Curl, Blytheville. Appointment expires July 1, 2023.

Owner or operator of a licensed perpetual care cemetery:

Stephen Whitwell, Little Rock. Appointment expires July 1, 2022.
Bill Booker, Little Rock. Appointment expires July 1, 2021.

Engaged in the operation of a burial association:

Rausch Hodges, Forrest City. Appointment expires July 1, 2022.
Bruce Smithson, Springdale. Appointment expires July 1, 2023.

To represent the consumer community:

Stephanie Neipling, Rogers.  Appointment expires July 1, 2021.

To represent the elderly consumer community:

Josephine Perry, Marshall.  Appointment expires July 1, 2020.

CONTACT: Press Shop (press@governor.arkansas.gov or 501.682.3642) 

©2018 State of Arkansas. All Rights Reserved.