Meet Our Staff

Our staff provides excellent funeral planning services.

We have years of experience caring for families from all walks of life, cultures and faiths. Our unsurpassed staff and our family provide kind, caring, professional service. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession who are dedicated to excellence in service, adhere to the highest funeral industry standards, and have exceptional integrity. We consistently earn phenomenally high customer satisfaction survey results.

Our licensed, professional staff is here for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Please call 510-232-4383 anytime. We will even come to you to make arrangements in the comfort of your home.

Prompt, compassionate service is always just a phone call away, where and when you need it.


Joseph Kyle Newkirk

Joseph Kyle Newkirk

Managing Partner/Funeral Director/Embalmer

Joe was born and raised in St. Petersburg, Florida. After serving his country in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War, he was honorably discharged in 1972 and moved to California. He started working with Wells Fargo Bank while attending Laney College to obtain his AA in Management & Supervision, graduating in 1979. He continued his career with Wells Fargo Bank for 23 years in Management. In 1993, he decided to switch his career path and began attending the San Francisco School of Mortuary Science and graduated in 1994 with his AA degree. He has been with Wilson & Kratzer Mortuaries since 1993 and now holds the position of Managing Partner/Funeral Director/Embalmer.

Joe has been married for 24 years. He and his wife, Anita, raised their four children in the Richmond/El Sobrante area and plan on retiring someday back in Florida. In the meantime, Joe takes great pride in serving the community where he has become well-known as "the man to see”, at Wilson & Kratzer Mortuary.

Taryn L. Chavez

Taryn L. Chavez

Operations Manager/Funeral Director/Embalmer

Taryn is a licensed funeral director and embalmer. She joined Wilson & Kratzer in March 2012 and is the current operations manager. She received her Bachelor's Degree in Biochemistry in 2007 and her Associate's Degree in Mortuary Science in 2009. She is also a notary public and fluent in Spanish. In her spare time you can find her at the YMCA in Richmond, playing her ukulele, or in her garden hanging out with her husband Leo and their fur babies Troll, June, Georgie and Franklin. Taryn was born and raised in Richmond and graduated from Pinole Valley High, and that is why she truly enjoys serving and assisting people in their time of need in the Richmond Community.

Ryan  Lipuma

Ryan Lipuma

Embalmer

Ryan has been with the Wilson & Kratzer Mortuaries since 2010. He is a very valued employee and has a passion for helping our community. He is a graduate of American River College in Sacramento and a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer.

Joel Vincent Garland

Joel Vincent Garland

Ambassador /Funeral Assistant

In 1979, Joel began working as a Life Insurance Agent and is currently a Sales Manager for United Insurance Company of America.

Joel started working for Wilson & Kratzer Mortuaries in January of 2007 as an Ambassador/Funeral Assistant and plans to continue working for Wilson & Kratzer long after retiring from the Insurance field.

Joel was born in Tallulah, Louisiana, and moved to Oakland, California in 1955. He is a graduate of Castlemont High (class of 1967) and Merritt Jr. College (class of 1970). He also spent one year at the University of California, Berkeley.

Marcia Muwwakkil-Gatlin

Marcia Muwwakkil-Gatlin

Ambassador /Funeral Assistant

Marcia, a wife, mother of three and grandmother of six, entered the work force in 1981. Her work experience includes management in retail, food service and hotel. She is also an Independent Beauty Consultant for Mary Kay Cosmetics.

After losing her grandson, daughter and mother and surviving cancer, she felt she had the capacity to work in the mortuary service field at Wilson & Kratzer. In her spare time, she enjoys ballroom dancing, traveling and social event coordinating.

Marcia, a resident of San Pablo, California, grew up in the nation's capitol of Washington, D.C. and moved to California in 1969.

Akim  Simpson

Akim Simpson

Ambassador

After graduating from Mortuary College in 2006, Akim served her internship at Wilson & Kratzer’s Connelly and Taylor Chapel and served her apprenticeship at Wilson & Kratzer’s Civic Center Chapel.

Akim said, “I love to serve and help the community. Customer satisfaction is what motivates me to strive to be the best. I am proud to be part of a great team of co-workers and under the leadership of great management, where we all work hard to please the families we serve."


Jordan Baldwin

Jordan Baldwin

Apprentice Embalmer

Jordan has been an employee with Wilson & Kratzer Mortuaries since March of 2014. She is currently working as an apprentice embalmer where she assists in many capacities. She is currently attending American River College studying Mortuary Science in Sacramento. She is a true joy and has proven to be someone we can all rely on.

Valerine Yuzon

Valerine Yuzon

Ambassador

Valerine has been at Wilson & Kratzer Mortuaries since April 2014. She is a true joy to have as an employee and is a very kind and generous person. Valerine currently serves our company as an ambassador for our Mission Bells Chapel where she assists with services and visitations.

Julius Xavier Van Hook

Julius Xavier Van Hook

Funeral Arranger

Julius Van Hook was raised in Richmond, California, where he completed his formal education, graduating from El Cerrito High School. He went on to earn a Bachelors Degree in Organizational and Business Management, with a minor in Biblical Studies from Patten University in Oakland, California, and a Master of Education Degree from Concordia University, Portland, Oregon. In the Spring of 2017, Mr. Van Hook will receive his Doctorate of Ministry from United Theological Seminary. Prior to returning to his career in Funeral Service, he worked as an Educator and Student Affairs Professional. He is also a proud, duly initiated member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.

Julius has been with Wilson & Kratzer since the beginning of 2016 and is a great asset to our team here.

Oshmin Oden

Oshmin Oden

Funeral Arranger

Oshmin is returning to Wilson & Kratzer after working in the mental health industry for the past seven years. He was raised in Oakland, CA, and has family who are longtime residents of Richmond, CA. Oshmin holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biblical Studies from Patten University in Oakland, CA, where he graduated in 2004. He is currently working towards a Master of Social Work through the Virtual Academic Center at the University of Southern California. Oshmin is a proud member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., where he was initiated through the Theta Pi chapter in Vallejo, CA.

Oshmin is also a professional bassist and has toured and performed both locally and nationally. Oshmin lives in the Greater Sacramento Valley Area with his wife of 11 years and their 5 children.

© 2017 Civic Center Chapel. All Rights Reserved. | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service