Our Committee

An introduction to our Committee members:

Julie D'Arcy - Chairperson

Julie was one of the first exchange students to Susono in 1983. She has kept in contact with her host families and taken her own family, including her four children, to Japan many times. She is passionate about FSFA and our association with Susono and looks forward to working with the Committee to continue strengthening the bonds of friendship between our two cities, plus sharing our knowledge and love for Japan!

Simon Hast - Vice Chairperson

Simon first travelled to Japan in 1995 with teachers and students from Frankston High School and was blown away by the sights and sounds of this amazing country, plus the generosity and hospitality of its people. His involvement in FSFA helps him to maintain and promote contact with the Japanese language and culture. Simon has made 6 trips to Japan, the most recent with the 2023 Frankston Delegation, and looks forward to more in the future!

Bev Hannan - Treasurer/Public Officer


Bev is the longest serving member of our committee and currently performs the role of Treasurer and Secretary/Public Officer. She has a great love of travel and particularly enjoys her trips to Japan and our sister city Susono. Bev's past roles have also included serving as a counsellor to the many students who have come to Frankston on long term exchanges.

Committee Members:

Vic Webster

Vic was introduced to Japan and in particular Susono, our Sister City, through his wife Bev Hannan. He has been an active member of the FSFA Committee for over fifteen years and he especially enjoys our Japanese Festivals, visits to our Sister City, the Japanese culture and the variety of Japanese foods. Vic and Bev have home hosted many of our Susono visitors and also guests from other parts of Japan. Vic also enjoys travel and cruising to many overseas destinations.

Therese Sakamoto

Therese is a Japanese language teacher who completed her student exchange to Susono in 1986. After more than 35 years she has maintained a strong connection to the city and thinks of Susono as her "second home"!

Anita Cross

Anita was a member of the 2018 Frankston delegation to Japan. She and her husband David had such a fantastic time learning about the culture and really enjoyed the home stay with their Japanese hosts, who they still keep in contact with. She was also blown away by how friendly the Japanese people were and really relished taking part in the Australian Fair in Susono and tasting such magnificent food. Having attended a couple of committee meetings previously, she decided that she may be able to contribute to the Association by joining the committee.

David Cross


David travelled to Japan for the 2018 Australian Fair in Susono as a new member of FSFA. The experience left a lasting impression and he looks forward to future trips to Japan and further developing relationships with our Japanese counterparts. He has a long history in community involvement, including chairing the Frankston Environmental Friends Network and Frankston High School Council, a member of Frankston Rotary Club, and was the Frankston Citizen of the Year in 2016. David is a passionate, long-term resident of Frankston and looks forward to promoting our fair city both here and in Japan.


Ann-Maree's introduction to Japanese people and culture was in 2000 when her family hosted a Japanese assistant teacher in their Selby home. In 2013 her family traveled to Japan to attend the teacher's wedding and the connection was strengthened with Japan and its people when her son married and relocated to Tokyo. Her family has a long and enduring relationship with Japan and its beauty.

Peter Bargholz


Peter has a long association with Japanese culture and has enjoyed many visits to Japan. He enjoys their polite and humble style of communication, their pragmatic approach to situations and challenges, and their appreciation and enjoyment of nature, beauty and quiet. But most of all Peter enjoys their magnificent cuisine! He believes that everybody needs to know about, and experience, the culture and food of Japan.

Anne Grant


Anne first learnt of the FSFA group through good friend and work colleague Therese Sakamoto. Working at a local primary school, she is involved in its Japanese programs. Recently deciding to join the FSFA committee, Anne looks forward to supporting the festivals and activities held throughout the year to highlight the sister cities wonderful connections. She enjoys the taiko drumming classes, travel photography, and loves the art of Shibori and Japanese calligraphy. Anne will travel to Japan in late March 2024 to experience the cherry blossom (sakura) for the first time.

Jorden Lancaster

Jorden has loved Japanese culture and language since Prep where Therese Sakamoto was his Japanese teacher. Since then, his love of Japan has grown and allowed him to participate in many Japanese events. In 2016 Jorden had the incredible opportunity to travel to Japan on a school trip, and in 2023 he participated in FSFA's Japanese Speech Contest in the Senior Division while studying Japanese in Year 12. Jorden hopes to continue his love of Japan by being on the committee.