When The Illawarra Connection started 25 years ago as a networking opportunity for business, civic, religious, industry and educational leaders across the region some said it would never last.
But it has stood the test of time and remains highly regarded as an important social event with inspirational speakers.
TIC has kept going from strength to strength. No other region can boast such a consistently well attended networking event drawing an equal number of men and women and people of all ages.
It performs a vital role in doing what its name suggests and keeping people connected.
So much so that when owners, managers and directors retire they keep coming.
It is also an opportunity for new arrivals and emerging leaders to be invited as guests.
The introductions they receive are mutually beneficial to all. And that means everyone benefits from the collective knowledge and wisdom.
TIC supports the next generation via scholarships, a leadership program with mentoring opportunities and MOUs with groups such as JCI.
The 25th anniversary dinner on Tuesday is being celebrated with the attendance of television personality and businessman Mark Bouris as special guest speaker.
TIC president Graham Lancaster said Tuesday is an important milestone.
“It is very pleasing, and gratifying to celebrate 25 years of informative and entertaining dinner meetings, where our members and their guests have made connections both meaningful and valuable to our region,” he said.
“I am honoured to be part of a Board, and organisation that celebrates our strengths each time we meet. I look forward to the Connection continuing for many years.”