Young Marines Board of Directors




William L. Smith

Mr. Smith is with LMI, Government Consulting. He is currently assigned as the Regional Director, North Africa and is also designated as the Branch Manager in Tripoli, Libya assisting the Government of Libya. Since joining LMI he has supported a wide variety of assignments to include:  providing strategic planning at the Department of State and Embassy Kabul;  supporting the U.S. Institute for Peace with a congressionally mandated review of the national security strategy; leading the Iraqi Strategic Logistics Study team in Baghdad; and managing a Logistics Test and Experimentation team of Boeing test engineers with the Army’s Future Combat System (FCS) program. 

Mr. Smith retired from the Marine Corps as a Colonel. His assignments included Commanding Officer, Officer Candidates School, command of infantry organizations from platoon through battalion, Director Coalition and Special Warfare Center, and as a United Nations Peacekeeper with the U.S. Military Observer Group Palestine.  His Pentagon assignments include Deputy for Marine Corps Matters with the Secretary of the Navy’s Office of Program Appraisal and Military Assistant to the Assistant Commandant.

Mr. Smith is a distinguished graduate of the Naval War College and has earned a Masters in National Security and Strategic Studies, Masters in Business Administration, and Bachelors in Business Administration in Finance from the McCombs School of Business, University of Texas at Austin. He has been on the Board of Directors of the Young Marines since 2008. He is a lifetime member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and the American Legion. Mr. Smith is also a member of the Marine Corps Association.

   William C. Barnes 

Mr. Barnes is a Past State President of the Washington State Elks Association. He has also served as a District Deputy twice for the South District and serves as a Trustee for the Elks Lodge #823. Mr. Barnes served in the U.S. Navy from 1966 to 1970. He spent 15 years in education and worked as a Locomotive Engineer with the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad. Mr. Barnes is also a Private Investigator and works in FELA Law.

He and his wife of 39 years have four children. They also serves the program as Registered Adult Volunteers with the Lewis & Clark Young Mairnes unit in Vancouver, Washington. Mr. Barnes is a member of the Marine Corps League Columbia River Detachment. 

   Dina R. Dillon

Mrs. Dillon is the Executive Vice President and Co-Owner of IBS Advisors, LLC. Dina is a veteran of the US Navy, where she served at NAS Alameda as a radioman. Passionate about her family, she and her husband have successfully raised four sons. Dina’s background is in organizational management and early childhood education (where she specialized in working with disadvantaged children).

In 2009, she founded the Guadalupe Valley Young Marines in Seguin, Texas and serves as the Unit Commander.

Herbert N. Harmon 
General Counsel

Mr. Harmon retired as a Colonel from the United States Marine Corps Reserve on January 1, 1998, after 30 years of military service. For the past 33 years, he has practiced law. He is the managing partner of Harmon, Wilmot, & Bagwell, L.L.P., a Washington, D.C. based law firm and specializes in civil litigation and general commercial and corporate matters. He is a former President of the Bar Association of the District of Columbia. From 1973-77 he served as an Assistant Corporation Counsel for the District of Columbia. He is currently a Mediator and Arbitrator for the District of Columbia Superior Court.

Colonel Harmon holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Detroit and a Juris Doctor from Georgetown University.

Harmon served on active duty during the Vietnam War where he received the Purple Heart in 1968 for wounds received in action. He also earned the Combat Action Ribbon, and as a member of the First Marine Division, received the Presidential Unit Citation with Ribbon Bar.

In his civilian activities, Colonel Harmon is a past Treasurer of the Barristers and past President of the Counselors.  He is a member and past President of the Exchange Club of Capitol Hill and past President and Board Member of the Metropolitan Police Boys and Girls Club. He is also a past President of Serra International, the downtown Washington, D.C. Chapter and General Counsel of the Marine Executive Association.

Colonel Harmon’s professional military affiliations include the Reserve Officers Association of the United States, of which he was National President in 1997. He is a past National President of the Marine Corps Reserve Officers Association and past national Officer of the Marine Corps League. He also served as National Judge Advocate General for the Marine Corps Aviation Association, of which he is a life member. He is also a Life Member of the Purple Heart Society, the American Legion and the PSYOP Association.

His bar admissions include the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, the United States Tax Court, the U.S. Court of Military Appeals, and the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

Colonel Harmon is married to the former Diane Wright of Nutley, New Jersey. They reside in Alexandria, Virginia.

  Michael B. Kessler    National Executive Director and CEO

Mr. Kessler has served as the National Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Young Marines from 1999 to present. Mr. Kessler served for 25 years in the United States Marine Corps and retired as a Leiutenant Colonel.

Mike Kessler is a graduate of Command Staff College. He earned a Bachelor's Degree in History from the Univeristy of Washington. Mr. Kessler also earned a Master's Degree from the  College of Naval Warfare.






Harold Gene "SgtMaj" Overstreet

Mr. Overstreet entered the Marine Corps in June 1966 and completed recruit training at Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, Calif., followed by Basic Infantry Training School at Camp Pendleton, Calif. Upon completion of school, he was assigned to the 1st Military Police Battalion, 3rd Marine Division, Republic of Vietnam. Returning to the states, he was reassigned to the Infantry Training Regiment at Camp Pendleton.

His promotion to first sergeant in February 1979 led to his second assignment on Okinawa as the First Sergeant, Headquarters and Service Co. 8th Engineer Battalion.

Sergeant Major Overstreet became the Inspector Sergeant Major, MCAGCC, Twentynine Palms. Returning to Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, he served as a Battalion and Regimental Sergeant Major in the Recruit Training Regiment. Transferring to Camp Lejeune, N.C., he served as the 6th Marines Sergeant Major, followed by duty as Regimental Sergeant Major, 12th Marines, Okinawa.

On April 6, 1990, Sergeant Major Overstreet was posted as Depot Sergeant Major at San Diego. He was selected as the 12th Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps in April 1991, and assumed the post on June 28, 1991.

Sergeant Major Overstreet’s personal decorations include: Distinguished Service Medal; Superior Service Medal; the Meritorious Service Medal; Navy Commendation Medal; Navy Achievement Medal; and the Combat Action Ribbon











Catherine Payne Treasurer


Mrs. Payne serves as Director, Ethics and Compliance Operations for Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), a company with approximately 14,000 employees worldwide. In this capacity, Cathy oversees the Code of Conduct and ethics training and serves as a subject matter expert in ethics investigations. Cathy conducts analysis of Ethics and Compliance data across the enterprise and provides oversight of the collection and presentation of metrics, provides root cause analysis, analyzes ethical trends, and identifies areas for improvement.

Cathy was born and raised in the village of Spring Lake, Michigan. Following high school, she attended the University of Southern California and upon graduation, was commissioned a second lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps. 

She attended Air Command and Control School where she graduated second in her class and was assigned to a squadron deployed to Guantanamo Bay to assist the DEA in counter drug operations. In 1991, she received a Master’s degree in Operations Research from Navy Post Graduate School and earned an award at John Hopkins’s Applied Physics Lab for her thesis on the ‘Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield’. During her duty in Washington DC, she was selected to represent the Marine Corps on the Presidential Commission on the Assignment of Women in the Armed Forces.

In June of 2000, she earned a position on the United States Military Pentathlon Team. Following team selection, she was sent to the NATO Pentathlon Competition in Berlin where she earned a gold medal for the US Armed Forces. Following her success in Berlin, she was selected to attend the Marine Corps Command and Staff College in Virginia. 

Cathy represented the U.S. Northern Command in the Pentagon, Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Justice. Her duties included working with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Secret Service, and intelligence agencies in special operations and law enforcement. Additionally, Cathy was selected to serve as the co-director of research for the Congressional Commission on the National Guard and Reserves from 2005 to 2008.

In 2009, Cathy joined SAIC’s Defense Solutions Group contributing through a series of roles, including positions supporting U.S. Forces Afghanistan and the Wounded Warrior program at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

Cathy received her bachelor’s degree in mathematics and natural science from the University of Southern California. She received a master's degree in operations research from the Naval Post Graduate School in Monterey, California and is a graduate of the U.S. Marine Corps Command and Staff College.

Cathy is happily married to retired Marine and former Iranian hostage, Steven Kirtley. They have three sons, Cameron, Christopher, and Brian.








William J. Walker
Vice Chairman

Mr. Walker is a Colonel, Military Intelligence Corps, in the U. S. Army National Guard. He has served in a variety of command and staff positions of increasing responsibility to include service with the NATO International Security Assistance Force - Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Colonel Walker is a graduate of the Joint and Combined War-fighting School, the Inter-American Defense (War) College, the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, the National Security Course and the U.S. Army Defense Strategy Course. His awards include the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Joint Achievement Medal, Army Achievement Medal and the Department of State Meritorious Honor Medal.

 In January 2014, Mr. Walker retired from civilian government service after 30 years as a Special Agent of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). He was appointed a DEA Special Agent at the Chicago Field Division and served in a variety of domestic and foreign criminal investigative positions as well as several Headquarters administrative staff assignments. Mr. Walker held supervisory, management and senior executive service positions in New York, Florida, Puerto Rico and Washington, DC. Promoted to the Senior Executive Service rank in August 2002 and to Deputy Assistant Administrator in 2004, his last position was Director, DEA Office of Strategic Warning.

Mr. Walker was educated at the University of Illinois (BA), Chicago State University (MS), the National Intelligence University (MS) and American University (MA). He completed the National and International Security Program for Senior Executives at Harvard University; the National Security Studies Program at George Washington University; the Center for Homeland Defense and Security, Executive Leader’s Program at the Naval Post Graduate School and is a Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Center for International Studies, Seminar XXI fellow.