In our own small corner of the pale blue dot of earth, 1991 was to be a stellar sporting year – with the Oarsome Foursome getting into promising shape for the ‘92 Olympics; victories by the Wallabies in the ‘91 Rugby World Cup; a 3-Nil Ashes clean-sweep by Alan Border’s Eleven; and a victory at the British Open by Ian Baker-Finch.

The Ethnic Business Awards were kicking a few goals of their own, too.

Separate launches were held in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne with the NAB hoping that the branch networks, through different ethnic communities and individuals, would see a record number of nominations in this fourth year of success.

Speaking at the Melbourne launch, the Bank’s General Manager, (Central Zone Victoria), Mr John Dawson, said that, despite the difficult economic climate, he expected a record number of entries.

“The Awards have been growing in prestige, and there has been a steady increase in the quality of the people and businesses nominated,” he said.

In addition to the award for ventures established under the Business Migration Programme, the other two major awards were expanded to three, covering manufacturing, non-manufacturing and businesses with six or fewer employees.

There were also to be selections made at State levels, with finalists in the various categories from each State going through to the national finals, to be televised live from Sydney’s Sheraton Wentworth Hotel by SBS Television on October 2nd.

The broadcast was now to be in prime time and would feature, for the first time, film clips of the finalists at work, telling their own, personal stories of success in Australia.

Over 290 ethnic businessmen and women from more than 40 countries competed for the fourth Ethnic Business Awards, reflecting the growing support and prestige that the event was achieving.

Popular SBS newsreader, Mary Kostakidis, hosted the Awards, which were attended by NSW Premier, Nick Greiner, who presented the Small Business Award. Also attending were Opposition Leader, Bob Carr, and the Managing Director of NAB, Don Argus, who presented the remaining awards.

They were joined by representatives of ethnic businesses as well as community and media organisations, and senior management of the National Australia Bank.