Keith Kassens

May 7th, 2021

Keith Kassens

Keith has been with the company for over 27 years. Operating the stacker and performing utility clean-up around the sawmill have both been his main and preferred duties, however, he has been able to experience much more than just those positions over the years. During the economic downtime in 2009, Keith persevered through company-wide pay and shift cuts as well as temporary layoffs. While the sawmill was down, he ended up going over to Pacific Wood Laminates to work in our plywood division. No matter the task, Keith was always willing, able, and appreciative of the work that was available.

This stayed true even when the economy recovered, and the mills were back to running full shifts. You could always count on Keith to stay on task. While others might check their phones or relax during a breakdown, you’d always find Keith productively occupying himself with the company’s best interest in mind.

With a deep appreciation for small businesses, Keith is exceptionally proud of his time with South Coast. “If you work hard, this company will appreciate you.” When we built our new sawmill, Keith notes that a new culture developed. Rather than sticking to traditional ways, we have been more forward-thinking, and it has made a noticeable difference. Keith is also a major advocate of safety and ensuring that people are always aware of themselves and their surroundings. He is excited for the growth and continued development of our safety program and committees.

Recently, Keith was diagnosed with cancer. The doctors estimated he would be out of work for at least three months during treatment. Those three months then turned into a full year. Keith’s optimistic attitude coupled with his immense strength and determination played a tremendous role in his fight against the sickness. He was very eager to get back to work as soon as his doctors gave him the green light.

After Keith retires, he plans on spending a lot of quality time with his grandkids. He also has several projects around his house that he is eager to finish up. After commuting to Brookings from Crescent city for the past 27 years, Keith is ready to be able to spend more time with his wife and his family at home.

Keith, we wish you all the best in your retirement. We cannot thank you enough for all your hard work, enthusiasm, and loyalty to this company. We will miss you and your wonderful positivity dearly. You will always be a part of the SOCOMI family!