Staff

Our dedicated staff members are here to provide support, compassion, and information to help you through your journey of grief and the celebration of your loved one’s life.

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Michael Nienow Funeral Director

Mike graduated from Watertown High School in 2003. He began working at Hafemeister Funeral Home while in High School doing various jobs. He then attended Madison Area Technical College in Watertown for two years, while serving his apprenticeship at Hafemeister Funeral Home. Mike transferred to Milwaukee Area Technical College where he received an Associates Degree in Applied Science in Funeral Service, in 2006. Since 2006 he has been a licensed funeral director/embalmer at the Hafemeister Funeral Home which is owned and operated by his family.

On September 18, 2010 he married Jodi R. Sherry who was also born and raised in Watertown. He and Jodi have two daughters, Raelyn and Quinn.

In November of 2012, Mike earned his Wisconsin Life Insurance License. With this, the funeral home offers life insurance as a way to pre-fund future funeral expenses. In 2013 Mike became certified as a Crematory Operator.

Mike is a lifelong member of the Christ United Methodist Church, where he served as a Lay Leader. He is also on various church committees. He was formerly on the Board of Directors for the Watertown Main Street Program, and the Board of Directors of the Watertown Chamber of Commerce. He is a past President of the Watertown Chamber of Commerce. Mike is involved with YES!, which is a young professionals group organized to better the city of Watertown. Mike is currently serving on the Marquardt Foundation Board in Watertown. He is also a member of the National Funeral Directors Association, Wisconsin Funeral Directors Association and the Watertown Moose Lodge.In 2017 Mike was appointed by the Mayor of Watertown to The City of Watertown Ethics Board.

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Mark Nienow Funeral Director

Mark is Rich and Ann's youngest son and is a licensed funeral director/embalmer at the Hafemeister Funeral Home, which is owned and operated by his family.

Mark graduated from Watertown High School in 2006. He then attended Madison Area Technical College in Watertown for two years, while serving his apprenticeship at Hafemeister Funeral Home. He then transferred to Milwaukee Area Technical College where he received an Associate's Degree in Applied Science in Funeral Service, in 2010. Soon after, Mark earned his Wisconsin Life Insurance License. With this, the funeral home offers life insurance as a way to pre-fund future funeral expenses. In 2013, Mark became certified as a Crematory Operator.

Mark married the former Shannon Taylor on September 9, 2017. They have two doberman pinschers, Rocco and Gemma.

Mark is an active member and current board member of Rotary. Mark is a lifelong member of the Christ United Methodist Church. He is a member of the Wisconsin Funeral Directors Association, National Funeral Directors Association, SMSM, local Moose Lodge and OKDR. In his spare time, Mark trains in Okinawan Shorin-Ryu Karate-do and Brazilian jiu-jitsu. He enjoys MMA, spending time with friends, video games, and is an avid Packer's and Badger's fan.

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Kailey-Jo Gruling Office Administrator

Kailey-Jo became our Office Administrator in April of 2015. She was a 2009 graduate of Watertown High School. She then graduated from Madison Area Technical College in 2014 with an Associate’s Degree in Paralegal Studies. Kailey-Jo is a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Lebanon. She resides in Watertown with her husband and two children. When she is not cheering from the sidelines at her children’s numerous sporting events, she enjoys reading and spending time outdoors, especially boating and hiking.

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Nathan J. Schultz Apprentice Funeral Director

Nathan was born in Anaheim California in 1976, to Jim and Andrea Schultz. Nathan spent the majority of his life in Watertown, but did live in Alberta Canada for 3 years when his Father Jim received a calling to be a Pastor for the Edmonton Moravian Church. Nathan was confirmed at Ebenezer Moravian Church of Watertown in 1993.

Nathan is a 1995 Graduate of Watertown High school, and Graduated with a BA in Psychology from UW-Platteville in the year 2000. Nathan worked for Bethesda Lutheran Communities in Watertown for 13 years as a CNA, a Community Coordinator for the former Swifthaven Residential Care Apartment Complex (Now Platinum Communities River View Assisted Living) of Watertown for two years, and spent three years working as a Psychiatric Technician at Rogers Hospital of Oconomowoc.

Nathan joined Hafemeister Funeral Home in May of 2015 as a Funeral Home Apprentice, and will be entering the Funeral Director program of MATC in the near future.

Nathan’s hobbies include a deep love of all forms for music and enjoys playing both keyboards and guitar and is also an avid road bicyclist and enjoys being in the outdoors any chance he can get.

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Todd Christian Funeral Assistant

Todd is a lifelong resident of Watertown.  He graduated from Watertown High School in 1975.  He then graduated from Madison Area Technical College with an associate degree in Fire Science.  He joined the Watertown Fire Department in 1978 and retired 33 years later as a Firefighter/Paramedic.

Todd is a member of St. Mark's Lutheran Church where he serves on the Worship Service Committee.  He enjoys archery, golfing, and regular trips to Canada.  He married the former Susan MacDonald on July 10, 2014.  They both enjoy spending time with their many grandchildren.

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Rich Nienow Retired Funeral Director

Rich was born and raised in Watertown. He had been employed at Mullen’s Dairy until he graduated from Watertown High School in 1975.

He attended college in Madison and Milwaukee and was involved in the emergency medical services in both cities.

In 1979 he was married to the former Ann Sweeney of Watertown. Rich wrote his state board exams in 1980 licensing him as a funeral director and embalmer in Wisconsin.

He was a member of the Watertown Fire Department Auxiliary as a certified firefighter II, engine pump operator and Emergency Medical Technician for over 30 years.

Rich has been a member and past president of the Watertown Lions Club since 1979. He was certified in eye tissue enucleating for corneal transplants with the Wisconsin Eye Bank.

Other memberships include the Watertown Moose Lodge #830, Wisconsin Funeral Directors Association and National Funeral Directors Association. He completed over 18 years as a board member and chairman of the Watertown Chapter of the American Red Cross and is a lifelong member of the Christ United Methodist Church in Watertown where he has served on numerous boards and committees.

Rich retired in 2017 and enjoys spending time with his granddaughters.

Michael Nienow

Funeral Director
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Mike graduated from Watertown High School in 2003. He began working at Hafemeister Funeral Home while in High School doing various jobs. He then attended Madison Area Technical College in Watertown for two years, while serving his apprenticeship at Hafemeister Funeral Home. Mike transferred to Milwaukee Area Technical College where he received an Associates Degree in Applied Science in Funeral Service, in 2006. Since 2006 he has been a licensed funeral director/embalmer at the Hafemeister Funeral Home which is owned and operated by his family.

On September 18, 2010 he married Jodi R. Sherry who was also born and raised in Watertown. He and Jodi have two daughters, Raelyn and Quinn.

In November of 2012, Mike earned his Wisconsin Life Insurance License. With this, the funeral home offers life insurance as a way to pre-fund future funeral expenses. In 2013 Mike became certified as a Crematory Operator.

Mike is a lifelong member of the Christ United Methodist Church, where he served as a Lay Leader. He is also on various church committees. He was formerly on the Board of Directors for the Watertown Main Street Program, and the Board of Directors of the Watertown Chamber of Commerce. He is a past President of the Watertown Chamber of Commerce. Mike is involved with YES!, which is a young professionals group organized to better the city of Watertown. Mike is currently serving on the Marquardt Foundation Board in Watertown. He is also a member of the National Funeral Directors Association, Wisconsin Funeral Directors Association and the Watertown Moose Lodge.In 2017 Mike was appointed by the Mayor of Watertown to The City of Watertown Ethics Board.

Mark Nienow

Funeral Director
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Mark is Rich and Ann's youngest son and is a licensed funeral director/embalmer at the Hafemeister Funeral Home, which is owned and operated by his family.

Mark graduated from Watertown High School in 2006. He then attended Madison Area Technical College in Watertown for two years, while serving his apprenticeship at Hafemeister Funeral Home. He then transferred to Milwaukee Area Technical College where he received an Associate's Degree in Applied Science in Funeral Service, in 2010. Soon after, Mark earned his Wisconsin Life Insurance License. With this, the funeral home offers life insurance as a way to pre-fund future funeral expenses. In 2013, Mark became certified as a Crematory Operator.

Mark married the former Shannon Taylor on September 9, 2017. They have two doberman pinschers, Rocco and Gemma.

Mark is an active member and current board member of Rotary. Mark is a lifelong member of the Christ United Methodist Church. He is a member of the Wisconsin Funeral Directors Association, National Funeral Directors Association, SMSM, local Moose Lodge and OKDR. In his spare time, Mark trains in Okinawan Shorin-Ryu Karate-do and Brazilian jiu-jitsu. He enjoys MMA, spending time with friends, video games, and is an avid Packer's and Badger's fan.

Kailey-Jo Gruling

Office Administrator
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Kailey-Jo became our Office Administrator in April of 2015. She was a 2009 graduate of Watertown High School. She then graduated from Madison Area Technical College in 2014 with an Associate’s Degree in Paralegal Studies. Kailey-Jo is a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Lebanon. She resides in Watertown with her husband and two children. When she is not cheering from the sidelines at her children’s numerous sporting events, she enjoys reading and spending time outdoors, especially boating and hiking.

Nathan J. Schultz

Apprentice Funeral Director
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Nathan was born in Anaheim California in 1976, to Jim and Andrea Schultz. Nathan spent the majority of his life in Watertown, but did live in Alberta Canada for 3 years when his Father Jim received a calling to be a Pastor for the Edmonton Moravian Church. Nathan was confirmed at Ebenezer Moravian Church of Watertown in 1993.

Nathan is a 1995 Graduate of Watertown High school, and Graduated with a BA in Psychology from UW-Platteville in the year 2000. Nathan worked for Bethesda Lutheran Communities in Watertown for 13 years as a CNA, a Community Coordinator for the former Swifthaven Residential Care Apartment Complex (Now Platinum Communities River View Assisted Living) of Watertown for two years, and spent three years working as a Psychiatric Technician at Rogers Hospital of Oconomowoc.

Nathan joined Hafemeister Funeral Home in May of 2015 as a Funeral Home Apprentice, and will be entering the Funeral Director program of MATC in the near future.

Nathan’s hobbies include a deep love of all forms for music and enjoys playing both keyboards and guitar and is also an avid road bicyclist and enjoys being in the outdoors any chance he can get.

Todd Christian

Funeral Assistant
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Todd is a lifelong resident of Watertown.  He graduated from Watertown High School in 1975.  He then graduated from Madison Area Technical College with an associate degree in Fire Science.  He joined the Watertown Fire Department in 1978 and retired 33 years later as a Firefighter/Paramedic.

Todd is a member of St. Mark's Lutheran Church where he serves on the Worship Service Committee.  He enjoys archery, golfing, and regular trips to Canada.  He married the former Susan MacDonald on July 10, 2014.  They both enjoy spending time with their many grandchildren.

Rich Nienow

Retired Funeral Director
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Rich was born and raised in Watertown. He had been employed at Mullen’s Dairy until he graduated from Watertown High School in 1975.

He attended college in Madison and Milwaukee and was involved in the emergency medical services in both cities.

In 1979 he was married to the former Ann Sweeney of Watertown. Rich wrote his state board exams in 1980 licensing him as a funeral director and embalmer in Wisconsin.

He was a member of the Watertown Fire Department Auxiliary as a certified firefighter II, engine pump operator and Emergency Medical Technician for over 30 years.

Rich has been a member and past president of the Watertown Lions Club since 1979. He was certified in eye tissue enucleating for corneal transplants with the Wisconsin Eye Bank.

Other memberships include the Watertown Moose Lodge #830, Wisconsin Funeral Directors Association and National Funeral Directors Association. He completed over 18 years as a board member and chairman of the Watertown Chapter of the American Red Cross and is a lifelong member of the Christ United Methodist Church in Watertown where he has served on numerous boards and committees.

Rich retired in 2017 and enjoys spending time with his granddaughters.