The TSPS Bridge acts as a “board of directors” and advises the Commander on most aspects of Squadron activities.
It usually consists of the bridge officers (Commander, Executive Officer, Educational Officer, Administrative Officer, Secretary, Treasurer) and at least 3 or more members at large. All persons on this committee must be elected by the membership. The Squadron Bylaws should define powers and who should be on this committee.
Some of the functions of this committee are, but are not limited to:
- General charge of policy
- Management and finances of the Squadron
- Custody of all property of the Squadron
- First approval of all bills
- Recommends dues of the membership
- Approval of invitation to membership
- Approve nominations as Associate and Honorary memberships and transfers
- Approve the appointments of the Commander
- Approve any bylaw changes before being presented to the membership
- Be aware of and approve the time and place of education courses
- Fill any vacancy in an elective office in the Squadron until a successor has been duly elected
- Investigate any complaint that may require disciplinary action (Article XIII, USPS bylaws)
|Commander||–||general information about TSPS|
|Administrative Officers||–||media enquiries|
|Education Officer||–||information on English classes for the Japan Class 1 & 2 license|
|–||information about our educational programs|
|Membership Officer||–||information about applying or the status of your membership|
|Cruise Director||–||information about planned cruises|
|Public Relations Officer||–||questions via email in written Japanese|
|United States Power Squadron||–||information on our parent organization|
Officers of the TSPS Bridge in 2022-23 are:
Mike became interested in sailing when he worked as a merchant seaman on Scandinavian ships in the early 1970s. He learned how to sail dinghies on Lake Merritt in Oakland, California in the 1980s. He finally bought his first sailboat, an Islander 29, in Hawaii in 1987. After sailing Palekana around the Hawaiian Islands for 6 years, he acquired an old Columbia 43, Distant Dreamer, which he sailed in Hawaii and now has been sailing in Japan. He’s been with TSPS since 2001.
Executive Officer and Event Coordinator
Svetlana was born and raised in Moscow, Russia, until coming to Japan on an impulse 10 years ago.
She now speaks fluent Japanese, and she’s been all around the country by all imaginable means of transportation. She enjoys being outdoors the most, preferring activities like hiking, snowboarding, wakeboarding and, of course, sailing. Svetlana joined TSPS in 2018, becoming an active participant of all educational and social events. Shortly after, she passed the JMRA license test on the first try and became an approved skipper within the club. Oh, and if you ever need good weather – don’t ask her how, but she delivers.
Working a day job as an Event Organiser for luxury brands, she is planning to bring more top-notch activities to the club, and promises to make sailing more popular among women, leading by example.
David grew up in France and went fishing on powerboats and started dinghy sailing in Normandy. He came to Japan for the first time in 1998. He took the JMRA license when he came back to Japan in 2017. He joined TSPS in 2021 to learn sailing and cruising. TSPS warm welcome has been providing great opportunities for learning, practicing and experience sharing.
The Administrative officer will do his best to listen, share, and support the TSPS activities among Boat owners and Crew members and families, with training, boat rental options, and Dinghy sailing.
I’m a retired Belgian living in Japan for 28 years. I joined TSPS a couple of years ago and have been supporting the lessons for Class 2 and 1 Japanese boat operator license.
Since last year I spend most of my time on ANAIS, a 32-foot racing yacht at the Tokyo Yume-no-shima Marina.
Assistant Education Officer
Jeff’s first boat was a 17-foot aluminum canoe that his family would take to lakes and rivers in Oregon. When the wind was against them and the paddling brought up images of Roman slave galleys, he longed for a sail. He didn’t get one until university, when he took a dinghy sailing class for his PE credit. The instructor’s method was to carry a bottle of peach brandy aboard his boat and anybody good enough to catch him got the bottle…until someone else caught them. (Jeff has since learned far better methods of instruction.) That spring, sailing students grouped together on charter boats in the San Juan Islands above Seattle, and, after sailing a week amid wilderness islands against the backdrop of snowcapped mountains, he was hooked on cruising.
He later took the USPS Boating Course and the JMRA license course during his first year in Japan. At that time, Edo castle was under construction and listening to boating lectures under cherry trees while sipping green tea was a calming diversion from English teaching. What he learned was that USPS is a bootstrap organization, wherein experienced members share their knowledge of boating with novice members, who, as they gain experience are obligated to begin sharing what they know with the members that follow them into the Squadron. The Education officer is there not so much to teach, but to encourage the transition from novice boater into experienced instructor for each member.
Secretary and Law Officer
A long-term Japan resident, Langley grew-up on Okinawa and completed law school in Japan as well as in the United States. Formerly the General Counsel for Apple Computer (Japan) and at General Motors (Asia Pacific), Langley currently runs a public-affairs consultancy and is considered a local expert on Japanese politics. At 16 years, he crewed cross-the-Pacific on a Merchant Marine ship out of Naha Port to Charleston, South Carolina, sailing through the Panama Canal and through the Gulf of Mexico in 1969. His passion is sailing and educating others about sailing in Japan…. and avoiding Merchant Marine ships.
As Bridge Secretary, Langley is dedicated to assisting the Bridge run effectively and smoothly (as in monthly Bridge Meetings) and in facilitating communication among the leadership. Working with the Commander, Langley intends to keep TSPS compliant with TSPS’s NPO status while embellishing the existing relationships with likeminded sailing/boating organizations locally and worldwide.
Bill Van Alstine
A fluent Japanese speaker, Bill has worked in Japan since 1985. He is experienced in operating small watercraft and has done so since age 12. He is mostly a power boat guy who arranges wake boarding trips with TSPS members. Presently learning to operate a 38-foot cabin cruiser. Completed USPS education courses in Seamanship, Piloting and Advanced Piloting. In addition, Bill served as TSPS Commander in 2017 and 2018.
In addition to continuing his role as TSPS Treasurer, Bill looks forward to increasing TSPS member value through more on-the-water events and opportunities for members.
Will grew up in the American Mountain West. Outside ski season, he prefers to be on the water. He joined TSPS in fall of 2021, and completed his JMRA Class 2 certification shortly after. He is a relative newcomer to Japan, but plans to see as much of the country as possible, ideally by sailboat.
He looks forward to continuing the great work of the previous Membership Chair and steadily growing the club’s membership so that more people can enjoy TSPS activities.
Webmaster and IT Head
Rob came to Japan 3 years ago for what was planned to be a temporary assignment but fell in love with life here and stayed. He wrote his first program in 1980 as a (fortunate) young boy and has been a cybersecurity specialist for the past 25+ years. His passions include sailing, history, international affairs, some extreme sports, food, and cocktails. He grew up in New England about 20 minutes from Newport, RI and started sailing at age 7, never realizing how good he had it until he moved away to college. After that, he kept returning to New England to charter yachts for long trips around the Elizabethan islands. When planning to come to Japan he saw that the sailing community in Tokyo was starting to gain traction, and joined TSPS so that he could continue sailing.
He sees a lot of opportunity to make small changes that will bring large benefits to the website and the process behind how TSPS uses IT. Rob also wants to work closely with others to support social media and other outreach activities that both grow our membership and make it easier for current members to enjoy what TSPS has to offer.
Boating Activities Chair
Vlad came to Japan in late 2016. From an early age he was inspired by boats and sails that he saw at Ozov sea ports and marinas frequently visited during summer breaks. His own sailing career began in 2015 with the Moscow sailing club that ran a fleet of nice and high-performance dinghies: SB-20. With this club, Vlad acquired his first boating license that covers the internal waters of the Russian Federation.
Likely, in 2021 he was introduced to TSPS by his friend and ex-coworker in a way to get a Japanese boat operation permit. Learning more about the club, Vlad instantly subscribed for membership and joined various sailing activities.
For the upcoming years, he is looking forward to introducing more people to this art and sharing with them pleasant and memorable experiences. He also dreamed of seeing TSPS become a sailing school that provides official certification recognized by various chartering companies in Japan and around the globe.