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Emily Simmons appointed Executive Director for Albany Diocesan Cemeteries



In March of 2022, the Board of Directors led by Bishop Edward B. Scharfenberger announced the appointment of Emily Simmons as Executive Director for Albany Diocesan Cemeteries. Former Director Rick Touchette retired last year after 27 years of honorable leadership.

After a diligent search and spiritual deliberation, the Board felt Emily’s proven leadership skills and strategic goals were an excellent fit to lead Albany Diocesan Cemeteries into this next chapter. “With her experience, I am confident Emily will lead our cemeteries with compassion, empathy, and understanding.” said Bishop Scharfenberger.

Emily initially joined Albany Diocesan Cemeteries in January of 2021 as Director of Sales, and led the organization as Interim Director in months prior to the Executive Director appointment. With more than 15 years in the not-for-profit, hospitality and event industries, Emily served as Director of Programs & Strategic Partnerships for the New York State Economic Development Council before being called to start a career with Albany Diocesan Cemeteries.

“It is a privilege to lead the team and help bring to fruition the thoughts and ideas of our experienced cemeterians,” Simmons said. “Ours is a ministry of consolation and I am committed to continuing to uphold the high standards that provide families who come to us with a sense of consolation and peace.”

With 20 cemetery locations within the Albany, Greene, Rensselaer and Schenectady Counties of Upstate NY, Albany Diocesan Cemeteries honors the sacred traditions of the Roman Catholic church while also providing families a wide range of modern cemetery options. Emphasis is placed on compassionate care while specializing in immediate need and pre-planning cemetery and funeral assistance, fully customizable memorials and markers, and Memorial Masses to celebrate life, honor loved ones, and support the journey through grief and healing.

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