Harry Antram, president and CEO, Catholic Cemeteries and Funeral Homes in Phoenix has dedicated his life’s vocation to the funeral and cemetery industry.

His journey started at the age of 18 in his small hometown of Alamogordo, New Mexico when he took a job at the only funeral home in town and did everything from embalming to working services to typing up death certificates. After completing community college and his bachelor’s degree at the University of Arizona, Harry felt a calling to return to the funeral industry and went on to complete a mortuary science degree in Dallas, Texas.

“All along, I felt that my Catholic faith really guided me to find my passion to serve families at a difficult time in their lives,” explains Harry.

Joining the Catholic Cemeteries and Funeral Homes Family
In 2007, after spending nearly 20 years at French Mortuary in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Harry had the opportunity to join Catholic Cemeteries and Funeral Homes and model a concept he felt strongly about – establishing a funeral home and cemetery in the same location. It was also the first diocesan-owned Catholic funeral home in the state of Arizona.

Harry and his family moved to Phoenix, and he has spent 17 years serving in a variety of roles in the organization including director of Funeral Services, director of Mission and Care, and vice president of Funeral Services before being appointed as the president and CEO in October 2023.

“To me, the biggest measure of success is hearing how grateful pastors are to have us as part of the community,” says Harry. “The pastors share they feel confident sending families to us and knowing the families will be directed in line with the teachings of the Church.”

During his time at Catholic Cemeteries and Funeral Homes, Harry has witnessed the tremendous growth of the organization. Now, there are two funeral homes that serve approximately 1,100 families a year, while six cemeteries have approximately 3,000 burials each year.

“Our mission is to educate and advise on proper burial, in line with the Church’s teachings, and we want to be able to assist families who may have moved away from the Church and bring them back home including connecting them to grief counseling and resources,” adds Harry.

Areas of Focus in 2024 and Beyond

In his new role as President and CEO, Harry has laid out two critical goals to help keep the organization moving forward.

“First and foremost, we will continue to educate our staff on Catholic teachings that align to our ministry to help us serve our community,” explains Harry. “I also want to ensure that everyone on the team has growth opportunities within our organization and receives the development they need to achieve their goals.”

There is also a great potential to expand services as the Phoenix area and state continue to grow.

“Strategically, we are looking across the Diocese of Phoenix to understand our growth perspective and stay ahead of the curve,” says Harry. “We’ll make sure we’re growing in the right way and in the right places to ensure we can meet the needs of Catholic families across the Diocese now and into the future.