The Greek-Australian Society (GAS) is set to hold a Networking event in Sydney in anticipation of this year’s Mentoring Program, with one of its mentors in Bill Maloukis to deliver a keynote speech.

The meet-and-greet drinks event will be held at Forest Lodge Hotel, 117 Arundel Street Forest Lodge, NSW 2037, on Thursday, February 15, from 5.30 p.m.

It marks the beginning of the group’s activities in relation to its Mentoring Program that aims to bridge the gap between the different generations of Greek-Australians by providing younger individuals (mostly those just starting their professional careers) with an older, experienced mentor.

The evening will feature a keynote speech by Mr Maloukis, a Managing Director at Constructions Specialties (CS) Australia who joined the program as a mentor last year.

Bill Maloukis. Photo: Supplied

Mr Maloukis, whose parents migrated to Australia from Lesvos, has had a long career in the construction manufacturing industry, and has been part of the Australian division of CS (a US-Based global construction manufacturing supplier located in 25 countries) since 2008.

Initially attending a GAS event with his daughter Anastasia, he became interested with their program which would give him a platform to offer his help and support to younger individuals who themselves were just entering the Engineering field.

“I was impressed with the framework that the GAS team have developed to run an effective and worthwhile program,” Mr Maloukis told Neos Kosmos.

“My mentee was Antonios Lafkas, an engineering graduate who I was pleased to be able to meet with regularly and to provide guidance and also to act as a sounding board for him.”

Bill Maloukis (M) with GAS members George Psyhogios (L) and John Georgaklis (R). Photo: Supplied

He added that the dynamic allowed him to gain insights from his mentee’s perspective in regards to navigating the early stages of his career journey.

“I did not have a mentor early on in my career, so having the opportunity through GAS to take part in a coordinated program to assist a young professional on their journey is rewarding in itself,” he said.

Mr Maloukis, who is also a former secretary of the Mytilenian Brotherhood of Sydney and NSW, expressed his eagerness to share the story of his professional journey at this event, which has seen him work at companies like CSR Building Products, Boral Masonry, Caroma Dorf and now CS.

“I am looking forward to speaking at the GAS event and sharing the story of my career journey, the highlights and challenges along the way and some of the key moments that have shaped my path,” he said.

“I have been very fortunate to receive support and guidance from my own mentors and professional associations that I am part of, and this has helped me to adapt and grow throughout my own career.”

Bill Maloukis speaks to mentees. Photo: Supplied

GAS Vice-President Peter Dracakis stated the organisation’s pleasure to have Mr Maloukis share his insights.

“We are very happy that Bill is going to be supporting us. He has been a big ambassador of the group effectively since its inception. We are really excited to have him leading this event and we are hopeful that will be able to draw a big crowd as a result,” Mr Dracakis told Neos Kosmos.

Speaking more broadly on the event itself, Mr Dracakis emphasised it is a chance for members and guests to mingle with the mentors ahead of the 2024 edition of its program.

“These types of events give members, guests, and aspiring mentees access to champions of industry, people who

have shown a real, genuine interest in giving back to the community and sharing their life and professional experiences onto the next generation,” he said.

Bill Maloukis (L) at a recent conference with Construction Specialties Australia. Photo: Supplied

He added that the group takes pride in spreading across state borders, giving greater access for people from across the country to connect through the program.

“We have got mentors and mentees from Melbourne, Brisbane, Sydney, so we are really proud of being able to provide that connection to our mentors and mentees across states.”

Mr Dracakis stressed that the event is open to everyone, regardless of if your intention is to join the program or simply network with other attendees.

“We tell everyone to come in, learn, connect, and do with it what you choose. Whether you would like to get involved with the mentoring program or just want to develop/establish connections with the membership group in itself,” he said.

“The mentors have been handpicked and got a lot of value, and we are very lucky that they are so willing to give back and share their time,” Mr Dracakis said.