Steve LangChairman, President and CEO
As I look back on my career, I can see distinct phases that brought me to what I consider is the most exciting of all — being the CEO of Homesteaders Life Company. I spent 10 years working in human resource management and leadership development, leveraging the knowledge and skills I developed while pursuing my Master’s degree. This set of experiences prepared me for the challenges that lay ahead, especially in my second career phase in which I was part of a team charged with starting and growing a successful pre-need insurance business. Not only did I become immersed in the business of funeral service and insurance, I also learned about success, leadership and the joy that comes from helping both customers and employees achieve great things.
It is my good fortune to have joined Homesteaders. All of my prior experiences have become tools to use in helping our organization build a strong and balanced management team and strengthen itself financially, while helping our customers achieve their business goals. Homesteaders has always enjoyed a strong and positive culture. I find my passion is knowing that Homesteaders is getting better every day.
Steve ShafferChief Operating Officer
Steve, who joined Homesteaders in 2014, is a well-known and influential executive in the funeral and cemetery business. Prior to joining Homesteaders, he co-founded and served as President-CEO of Foundation Partners Group, LLC. He led an organization created to combine the best aspects of conventional end-of-life care with new ideas and technologies. Steve also completed two three-year terms as a Funeral Service Foundation Trustee. His experience in the funeral service profession helps ensure Homesteaders is well-positioned to continue its strong tradition of growth, profitability and financial strength. He earned an undergraduate degree from Indiana University Bloomington.
Steve W. PickExecutive VP-Chief Financial Officer/Treasurer
Steve joined Homesteaders in April 2013 with more than 27 years’ experience in the insurance and investment management industries, including 10+ years in Chief Financial Officer roles. He is responsible for directing Homesteaders' accounting, investment, treasury and risk management functions. Steve holds a BS in Accounting and Economics from Morningside College in Sioux City, IA, is a member of the American Institute of CPAs and is a Fellow in the Life Management Institute (FLMI).
Jim KoherExecutive VP-Chief Actuary
Jim came to Homesteaders in 2007 from Principal Financial Group, where he worked on pricing and product design as a Senior Actuary. His team is responsible for profit testing, product development, actuarial services and long-range profitability planning. In 2008 he earned his Certified Preneed Counselor (nonpracticing) designation from the NFDA. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science from Ball State University and is a Fellow in the Society of Actuaries (FSA).
Judy Ralston-HansenExecutive VP-HR/Administration
Since joining Homesteaders in 1997, I’ve worked to help employees be productive, engaged and successful through our company’s commitment to continuous improvement and personal accountability. Our culture is a big part of how we’re able to serve our customers so well: Each person knows he or she can make a real difference in the future of our company and in helping our funeral home customers be successful. I’m proud of the fact that we’ve been able to cultivate a workplace that is enjoyable for employees and provides the resources and training they need to excel in their careers. One of the best aspects of my role at Homesteaders is that I get to work on wide variety of projects while overseeing all human resources activities, organizational design, administrative services and facilities. As part of the leadership team, I help ensure Homesteaders’ long-term security, and I also have the opportunity coach and mentor our current and future leaders.
Marla G. LaceyExecutive VP-General Counsel
Marla is responsible for overseeing legal and compliance matters and is committed to ensuring that Homesteaders continues managing our business with the highest level of ethics, integrity and adherence to the laws and regulations that govern the pre-need insurance industry. With nearly 30 years experience in both corporate and private legal practice, Marla has gained a wealth of insurance compliance expertise. Marla earned her Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) designation in 2004 and her Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) designation in 2005. She received her undergraduate degree from Drake University and her law degree from the University of Iowa.
Lyndon PetersonExecutive VP-Sales and Marketing
Lyndon represents Homesteaders’ ongoing commitment to our funeral home customers. As the Senior VP-Sales, he oversees the account executive and third party marketer programs. Lyndon has an exceptional understanding of agency management and multi-channel distribution systems. He joins Homesteaders after a 27-year stint with Wellmark, Inc. He holds a B.A. in Finance and a Masters degree in Hospital and Health Administration from the University of Iowa as well as an MBA from Drake University. Lyndon is a fellow in the Life Management Institute (FLMI).
Wade ComstockExecutive VP-Operations
Under Wade's leadership, Homesteaders continues to develop the solutions that provide state-of-the-art technology to manage our business and serve our funeral home customers, sales counselors and policy owners. He is skilled in developing technical solutions that support customer and company success, including networks, programming, computer operations and technology support to customers. Wade brings to Homesteaders nearly two decades of experience in the information services field and holds his Bachelor degree in Computer Science from University of Iowa.
Dean LambertSenior VP-Marketing and Communications
Since 1993 my passion has been helping funeral professionals promote the value of what they do. My role at Homesteaders allows me to help people in the funeral business communicate how consumers can celebrate lives and ensure their own lives are remembered in meaningful ways. We are successful when our funeral home customers grow profitable market share on the strength of providing services and experiences that convert client families into proactive advocates. I manage a team responsible for all aspects of marketing, research, communications, corporate events and funeral home marketing services, and I love what I do!
Krista FrankSenior VP-Customer Service
In my role as Senior VP-Customer Service at Homesteaders, I ensure that our customer service, operations and agent licensing/compensation teams have the resources, training and encouragement they need to provide prompt, thorough assistance to our company’s stakeholders. The most important measures of our success achieve balance between how many things we do and how well we do them – and how our customers feel throughout the process. We understand that funeral service professionals are working with families during some of the most difficult times in their lives, and that they need a friendly, knowledgeable support team answering their questions quickly in order to do their jobs well. It’s easy to be passionate about serving our funeral home customers when we know they are so passionate about serving families. One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is hearing from the many people who have had an excellent customer service experience with Homesteaders.
Kim Medici ShelquistSenior VP-Planning & Development
I am an advocate for conversations that raise awareness of important issues surrounding the end of life. In my previous position as a hospice professional, I encouraged people to discuss their wishes to ensure they had the best possible end-of-life experiences that reflected their values. Since joining with Homesteaders in 2009, I have continued this advocacy by supporting funeral professionals in their efforts to communicate the benefits of proactive, open and honest end-of-life conversations. I feel fortunate to put my marketing and business management experience to work as head of Homesteaders’ Planning and Development team. My job is to seek opportunities and solutions that will help our company and funeral professionals meet consumer demands long into the future. I am also honored to serve as a Funeral Service Foundation Trustee, a role I have held since 2016.
Wayne HuegerichSenior VP-Accounting
My responsibility as Controller is to ensure the integrity, accuracy and timeliness of the financial information used in reporting the company’s financial statements and regulatory filings required by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) and each applicable state insurance department. This begins with making sure daily financial transactions are captured and accurately recorded, ensuring timely payments are made to policy owners, funeral home customers, agent and vendors and maintaining proper financial data controls.
I earned a degree in accounting and am a Fellow, Life Management Institute (FLMI). I’ve been working in the insurance industry for 35 years and enjoy meeting the challenges of an ever-changing world of accounting rules and financial regulations.