|Karen van Vuuren, Co-founder and Managing Partner||Seth Viddal, Managing Partner|
|Karen van Vuuren has taught and supported natural death care for more than twenty years. In 2003, she founded the end-of-life educational non-profit organization, Natural Transitions and is co-founder of the National Home Funeral Alliance. She has worked in both elder care and hospice, and is also an award-winning documentary filmmaker of Dying Wish (stopping eating and drinking at end-stage illness) and Go in Peace (care of veterans with PTSD at end of life).|
Karen van Vuuren is a former broadcast and print journalist who has taught and supported natural death care for more than twenty years. In 2003, she founded the end-of-life educational non-profit organization, Natural Transitions and edited the organization’s magazine for more than ten years. She is co-founder of the National Home Funeral Alliance. She has worked in both elder care and hospice, and is also an award-winning documentary filmmaker of Dying Wish (stopping eating and drinking at end-stage illness) and Go in Peace (care of veterans with PTSD at end of life). Her radio feature, The Practice of Living and Dying (https://beta.prx.org/stories/31107) about hospice physician, Scott Eberle’s work as a wilderness rites of passage guide, featured on National Public Radio. She also contributed a chapter on after-death care to the book Preparing to Die by Andrew Holecek https://shambhalatimes.org/2020/09/18/preparing-to-die-by-andrew-holocek/
Karen van Vuuren is a former broadcast news journalist whose 2008 documentary, Dying Wish (www.dyingwishmedia.com) marked an unanticipated return to visual media. She is the founder of Natural Transitions, a non-profit organization that helps families prepare consciously for death and conduct home funerals. Her current video project is the documentary Go in Peace (www.goinpeacefilm.org) about combat veterans and their care needs at end of life.
Karen van Vuuren is the founder and executive director of non-profit, Natural Transitions (since 2003). Based in Boulder, Colorado, Natural Transitions (www.naturaltransitions.org) provides education and support for conscious, holistic and green approaches to end of life, including after-death care. Since 2003, we have supported hundreds of individuals to direct their own funerals, led deathcare workshops, organized green burial and home funeral conferences, and we currently publish a national biannual magazine, Natural Transitions. Karen van Vuuren is also a documentary filmmaker whose passion is end of life care. Her films, are Dying Wish (www.dyingwishmedia.com) about voluntary stopping of eating and drinking at end of life; and Go in Peace! (www.goinpeacefilm.org) about the role of caregivers in healing the soul wounds of veterans at end of life.
|Seth started with The Natural Funeral as an intern as part of his studies at Naropa University. He added so much talent, enthusiasm, and over-all problem solving to so many aspects of the business that we wanted to make him our partner. Our clients tend to embrace his integrity and willingness to be present during their most difficult moments. His greatest gift is his uncanny ability to make each situation better than how it was before he arrived.|
|Vicki Viddal, Human Resources and Family Support Specialist||Daniel Ziskin, PhD, Chief Financial Officer, Director of Finance and Technology|
|Vicki brings her experience as mother, teacher, manager and friend to The Natural Funeral. She lets her heart lead when she serves families. When she isn’t working with The Natural Funeral, Vicki raises goats and chickens, tends her beautiful garden, and volunteers at her favorite local farms and schools. She is the proud mother of four spectacularly diverse children – Brittney, Jeremy, Ragen and Shepherd.||Daniel Ziskin is an Earth scientist, working for NASA, NOAA and currently NCAR. Although his professional specialty is data management of satellite observations, his life-long passion has been as an environmentalist. His expertise makes him a valuable member of The Natural Funeral team. Daniel is responsible for finance and technology.|
|Iris Irene, Holistic Funeral Coordinator||Ben Martin, Certified Life-Cycle Celebrant®|
|As an art therapist, mother, and holistic funeral coordinator, Iris cherishes opportunities to connect with people through rich conversations and the arts. Born, raised, and still thriving in Colorado, Iris welcomes curiosity about mortality and end- of-life options from people of all ages. The profound and complex experiences of the death of one of her sons in infancy and later her brother’s suicide continue to guide, inspire, and support Iris in connecting with people through loss, love, and the unexpected. By supporting people as they befriend their own mortality, expand their sense of what’s possible, and organize their thoughts around death, Iris stays in touch with what’s most meaningful.||Certified Life-Cycle Celebrant®
Serving Colorado, especially the Front Range and Foothills
Ben Martin is a Certified Life-Cycle Celebrant through the Celebrant Foundation and Institute (www.celebrantinstitute.org).
Through the years, Ben has shown a talent for crafting inspirational ceremonies and celebrations tailored to the unique needs of his audience. It has been his joy to officiate at such life-changing events as baby namings, graduations, weddings and funerals. Ben has been a writer by vocation and avocation for the last 37 years and brings a refined voice and creativity to each service. He recently published Prayers on the Road Home.
Ben completed his certification as a Life-Cycle Celebrant in 2016 with a special emphasis in both funerals and in ceremonies across-the-life cycle.