BEC Leaders

Click on the title to see his biography:

Big Sir: Ron Casssano 
Little Sir: Steve Schramm
Secretary:  Don Kohlman
Assistant Secretary
Attendance Secretary:  Dan Smith
Asst, Attendance Secretary
Membership Secretary: Dennis Mierzwa
Asst. Membership Secretary:  Rich Knowles
Treasurer:  Dan Casella
Assistant Treasurer:  Mike Loonin
Director: Ken Main


Big Sir

Ron Cassano

Born in Santa Rosa, Ca. Resident of Walnut Creek since 1969. Three daughters and four grandchildren. Married to Karen for 54 years until her death in 2018.

Graduate of UC Berkeley with a BS in Accounting. Obtained CPA license in 1967, worked for small regional and national accounting firms. Established my own accounting practice in1978. Retired from my accounting practice in 2011 but I still maintain a current CPA license. Presently serving my sixth term as Walnut Creek City Treasurer. Served six years in the California National Guard.

Joined SIR in 2008. Presently chairman of Dine In #1 and Winefinders #2. Have been Br 8 Assistant Treasurer, Treasurer, Little Sir and Big Sir. Also serving as State SIR Internal Auditor.

 I have enjoyed my membership in SIR and look forward to many more years with you guys



Little Sir

Steve Schramm,

Growing up in Sheboygan, Wisconsin was quite an experience. We claimed to be the Bratwurst Capital of the World. No offense to all of the towns in Germany that made the same claim. My early years were filled with organized sports, high school debate, and eating a variety of local sausages.

After degrees in Economics and Human Resources at the University of Wisconsin, I relocated to California with PG&E in 1983. I held Human Resources positions in Fresno, Moss Landing, and San Francisco during my six years with PG&E. My HR career continued in the Bay Area with high tech and biotech companies. Leadership roles at these companies enabled me to work globally with regular trips to Europe for business and pleasure. My working career concluded with several project consulting roles primarily with PG&E.

Since my retirement in 2014, I have become a Planning Commissioner for the city of Pleasant Hill. My familiarity with local zoning regulations, development plans, and property rights has increased exponentially. Joining SIR Branch 8 was a natural as I enjoy golf, reading, and many of the activities offered by our branch. Currently, I am chairman of SIRs at the Games, and look forward to becoming one of the directors of our branch in 2017.

My wife, Kay, and I have been married for 31 years. We enjoy Cassie, our Pembroke Welsh Corgi, and are both quite active in our community. In retirement, we look forward to traveling, reading, and lots of quality time at our home in Pleasant Hill. We are hopeful that SIR Branch 8 will be part of this picture for a long time to come.


Dan Casella

Dan was born in Battle Creek, Michigan. His family moved to Rockaway Beach, NY when he was four and lived there for 26 years until he and his wife, Helene, moved to Hamilton, MA where they resided for 37 years. They moved to their current residence in Clayton, CA in 2009. Dan & Helene have one son, David, who lives in San Francisco with his wife, Aimee Golant, and their grandson Kaleb. Dan spent four years in the United States Air Force and, after his service, received his BSEE from New York Institute of Technology and his MSEE from New York University.

Dan spent his 34-year career as an Electrical Engineer, Computer Scientist and Software Engineer dealing with real-time programming and system design. He has conducted research on advanced lighting systems, warehouse automation, advanced power line communications, medical equipment design, software engineering for cell phone communications, and fuel cell research. Dan retired in 2004 and is now enjoying his retirement pursuing his lifelong interest in photography and computer technology along with his family, especially his grandson, Kaleb.Dan joined Branch 8 in October 2016 and has been the Assistant/Treasurer since 2018 and is the co-chair of the Dine In 4 group.


Don Kohlman

Born in Los Angeles, CA.  A resident of Alamo since 1998.  Married to Elizabeth for 34 years and have one son and one daughter.  Graduate of UC Berkeley with a BA in Architecture.  Thirty-five-year career in corporate real estate with expertise in real estate, strategic planning and project management. Worked for large corporations including McKesson, American Express and Hewlett Packard.

Joined SIR in 2018. Active in the Book Club and Hiking Club.  Currently serving as Br 8 Secretary. 

Attendance Secretary

Dan Smith

Born in Norfolk, VA, I like stating that I grew up from Maine to Florida. I’ve lived in the Bay Area since 1974 and currently live in Concord. I have been married to a California gal, Lynda; for 48 years.  We have one son and I have two sons by my first marriage.

My association with my mother’s family, who operate a shipyard in Norfolk, influenced me to become a naval architect.  I obtained degrees from both VA Tech and MIT.  I am what we call a PE; licensed as a professional engineer.  The marine sector in the Bay Area has changed much since 1974, and I have managed to survive sometimes turbulent opportunities.  I experienced two layoffs and a plant shutdown over one eight-year span.  Being conservative in nature, I prevailed with my career and became Chief Naval Architect for Bruce S Rosenblatt and Assoc for 20 years.  My career has been very diverse, having supported the US Navy, offshore, oceanographic, ferries, tankers, cruise ships, and so forth.  I’ve also endeavored to mentor our younger naval architects.  I am still contacted by customers who want me to do a task for them.  Love to use my head…

Joined SIR in 2014. In addition to attendance, I am currently chairing the Luncheon Restart Committee.  I participate in walking, cribbage, bridge, various dining ventures and an occasional hike.

I appreciate SIR’s approach to keeping us active.  Although a little corny, I will say I’m not living if I’m not learning.  More importantly, I like having contact with other guys.

Asst. Membership Secretary

Rich Knowles

Born in 1948 in Los Angeles county and lived first ten years of life there.    Then lived in Los Alamitos, just over the county border in Orange County until after finished college.  Then went to Chicago, Washington, D.C. (technicially Reston, VA), and then came back to California in 1982 and have lived in Contra Costa County ever since.

Got a B.S. from UC Davis and then M.S. and M.B.A. from University of Chicago.  Decided could not be a professional student at that point (1975).

Worked as a consultant with titles like statistican, economist, and just plain consultant for 14 years.  Only conpany still existing I worked at is SAIC (Science Applications Incorporated Company I guess – it was just SAI when I was there).

I then officialliy became a programmer (though I had been that too all along) and worked for 20 years at the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco as programmer and then manager o0f programmers.  I was really good at training computers – not so much people.  I ended up as a Vice President at the Bank.

Twice in this working period I was self-employed, and both times I decided to become an employee again after a while.  Though being a consultant is fairly close to being self-employed.

Once retired I became involved in several volunteer efforts – the civil grand jury of Contra Costa County and the Cali0fornia Grand Jury Association.  I also did programming for Meals on Wheels and Senior Outreach Services in Walnut Creek.  I served on the board of Earthteam, and eventually became president.  I was co-chair Shipmates, a large singles social group (over 3,000 members and a group of 200 volunteers to manage over 200 events per month).  In 2016 I joined SIR (having been retired since 2009).

And now I mostly play golf.  Sometimes with SIR and sometimes with other friends I have made.  I also play bridge with SIR, belong to book clubs, and sponsor the SIR podcast and model train activities.  I have also joined Singles Dine Out a couple of times.  I like to take vacations and make it a point to several times per year.  Sometimes overseas and sometimes not.  And lastly, I can’t leave out that I am on a number of SIR committees because I really like Zoom meetings.


Ken Main

I was born in Framingham, Mass. As an “Army Brat”, we moved around a lot (every 2 -3 years). I attended New Mexico State University and earned a BS in Civil Engineering. I was also commissioned 2 LT (ROTC) and sent to Engineers School. My Active duty was shortened (during peacetime thankfully) and I was in reserve status for 7 1/2 years.

I joined Chevron in 1972 and worked as a Project Engineer and Safety Specialist at various locations. I enjoyed my career at Chevron and retired after 31.

I am married to Maureen for 47 years and blessed with 3 sons, 2 daughter-in-laws, and 4 grandchildren.

I joined Sir’s to make friends and enjoy my retirement years. I am currently the chairman of Dine Out 1, a member of the Activity Coordinating Committee and the BEC. I enjoy playing golf, swimming and Bridge. Sir’s is a great organization and it has certainly enriched my life.