Our Leadership

We have carefully selected a team of caring, experienced leaders in our profession who are passionate about providing the highest level of service to our customers, our employees and our partners.


  • Alan Teal photo
  • Brad Kraft photo
  • Brian Sullivan photo
  • David Jenkins photo
  • David Montgomery photo
  • David Salove photo
  • Deb Gilmore photo
  • Detlef Taylor photo
  • Donna Wagner photo
  • John Hale photo
  • John Renfro photo
  • La Tonya Blalark photo
  • Mark Hamilton photo
  • Mark Shinder photo
  • Mike Zislis photo
  • Sam Upton photo
  • Vinnie Faccinto photo
Mark Hamilton photo

Mark Hamilton

President and Chief Executive Officer

As Founder of NorthStar Memorial Group, Mr. Hamilton has over 20 years of professional experience in a broad range of responsibilities, including corporate acquisitions, financial management, corporate development, operational management and sales leadership.

Deb Gilmore photo

Deb Gilmore

VP of Administration

Ms. Gilmore began in the profession in 1987 and joined the NorthStar Memorial Group in 2005. Her focus is to provide a comprehensive and efficient internal support network that ensures NorthStar’s ability to provide caring, compassionate service to its customers. Deb is a past President of the Florida Cemetery Cremation and Funeral Association.

Detlef Taylor photo

Detlef Taylor

Senior Vice President of Sales, Eastern Region

As Vice President of Sales for our Eastern Region, Mr Taylor is a leader in hiring, training and development of our sales managers, focused on pre-need planning. He has over 17 years' experience in sales, and is a member of several professional associations.

David Jenkins photo

David Jenkins

VP of Operations, Florida

Mr. Jenkins grew up in the business with a family owned cemetery. After distinguished military service, Mr. Jenkins went on to hold corporate management positions in the profession including that of Area Manager. Mr. Jenkins joined NorthStar in 2005 bringing with him over 35 years of experience.

David Montgomery photo

David Montgomery

VP of Cemetery Development and Memorialization

Mr. Montgomery joined NorthStar in 2012. As Director of Cemetery Development and Memorialization of the Pacific/Western region, he is focused on the development of memorialization to honor the community’s heritage, and delivering highly personalized memorials for the families. Prior to joining NorthStar, for over 12 years David was the owner/operator of a very successful granite memorial business, and also worked with blue chip companies as an advertising executive.

John Renfro photo

John Renfro

Senior Vice President of Operations - Eastern Region
Director of Company Funeral Operations

Mr. Renfro oversees the innovative products and services provided to our customers and their families. A licensed funeral director and embalmer, Mr. Renfro has served in many professional associations including President of the Illinois Cemetery and Funeral Home Association.

Donna Wagner photo

Donna Wagner

Senior Vice President of Sales and Operations, Western Region

A professional with experience in both sales and operations for over 17 years, Mrs. Wagner has a passion for selling pre need products and services and leading a team of sales professionals. She has developed innovative marketing and communication programs for the company.”

Sam Upton photo

Sam Upton

SVP of Sales, Smart Cremation

Sam has over 18 years experience in the profession with both sales and operations. His focus is on hiring and developing Sales leaders and working with the sales group to help families with pre-planning.

Vinnie Faccinto photo

Vinnie Faccinto

SVP, Operations and Business Development , Smart Cremation

Spanning a 25+ year career dedicated to serving families in the death care industry Mr. Faccinto holds funeral director, embalmer, crematory operator, life insurance, and pre-need sales licenses. Before joining SMART he spent 11 years in private ownership and the 10 years prior as a SVP of sales with SCI. In his role with SMART he oversees future and current strategies to enhance the client experience.

La Tonya Blalark photo

La Tonya Woods

Director of Client Services

Ms. Woods brings over 15 years of customer service and collections experience to the NorthStar management team. Ms. Woods has a passion for providing customer satisfaction with a unique combination of intuitive and analytical abilities. Additionally, she is responsible for the development and implementation of customer impacting process and procedures for NorthStar’s internal and external customers.

Mike Zislis photo

Mike Zislis

Chief Information Officer


David Salove photo

David Salove

VP of Operations, Western Region

Dave Salove has served more than 40 years in our profession and is a native of Idaho where his career began as a funeral director and embalmer. He has served as a GM in Idaho and Washington and was a market manager in Alaska for several years. Over his career Dave has been very active in professional and community groups and organizations, holding many offices and board positions. He joined NorthStar in January of 2012 and currently oversees funeral and cemetery operations in the Western Region which includes locations in Washington, California and Arizona.