Celebrating 20 Gala Dinner - SOLD OUT


Two decades of Asia Society in Australia

Celebrating Legacy, Mapping the Future

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the establishment of Asia Society Australia. It is an important milestone and an opportunity to reflect on our achievements and consider the work ahead. 

Join us for 'Celebrating 20' - Asia Society Australia's 20th Anniversary Dinner on 30 August 2017 in Sydney, presented in partnership with Blackmores.

Bringing together over 450 leaders, influencers and champions of Australia-Asia relations, this will be a high-profile event not to be missed and a chance to celebrate Australia’s relations with the region. 

Venue: Four Seasons Hotel Sydney, 199 George Street, Sydney, NSW, 2000
Time: Drinks from 6:30pm, Seated 7:15pm - 11pm 
Dress code: Black-tie or National Dress

Tickets are now SOLD OUT. 


  • Keynote address by former Prime Minister The Hon John Howard OM AC who launched Asia Society Australia in 1997

Remarks by:

  • The Hon Julie Bishop MP, Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Senator the Hon Penny Wong, Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister and Leader of the Opposition in the Senate
  • Ronnie C. Chan, Asia Society Global Co-Chair and one of Asia’s preeminent philanthropists and business leaders

The event will also honour: Asia Society Australia's founding Chairman Hugh Morgan AC, founding Director Richard Woolcott AC, and Immediate Past Chairman, The Hon Warwick Smith AM, and all the members, supporters and friends who made Asia Society Australia a successful and dynamic social enterprise that it is today.

Celebrating 20 will feature a special performance by our Cultural Partner, Sydney Symphony Orchestra and a presentation of the Asia Society-Chopard 'Passion for Excellence' Award.


The Hon John Howard OM AC
Prime Minister of Australia (1996-2007)

John Howard served as Australia’s Prime Minister between March 1996 and November 2007. He is the nation’s second longest serving Prime Minister, was a Member of Parliament for 33 years, and was Treasurer in an earlier government. Under his leadership Australia enjoyed continued economic growth averaging 3.6% per annum. His government delivered major economic reform in the areas of taxation, workplace relations, privatisation and welfare. The Howard government strengthened bilateral ties between Australia and many nations in Asia. During Mr Howard’s time as Prime Minister China became Australia’s largest export destination.


The Hon Julie Bishop MP 

Minister for Foreign Affairs

Julie Bishop is the Minister for Foreign Affairs in Australia's Federal Coalition Government. She is also the Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party and has served as the Member for Curtin in the House of Representatives since 1998. Minister Bishop was sworn in as Australia's first female Foreign Minister on 18 September 2013 following four years in the role of Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade. As Minister for Foreign Affairs, Minister Bishop has overseen the single largest expansion of Australia's overseas diplomatic presence in 40 years, introduced the New Colombo Plan to support Australian students to study and undertake internships in the Indo-Pacific region, and established the innovationXchange within the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to develop bold and creative solutions to long standing development challenges.


Senator the Hon Penny Wong

Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs

Penny is the Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs and a member of the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security. Penny was born in Malaysia and moved to Adelaide with her family as an eight year old where she now lives with her partner and their two daughters. Before entering politics Penny worked for a union, as a ministerial adviser in the NSW Labor Government, and as a lawyer. Penny was elected to the Senate in 2001 and took her seat in 2002. Following the election of the Labor Government in 2007 Penny was appointed the Minister for Climate Change and Water and later served as Minister for Finance and Deregulation. In 2013 Penny was appointed Leader of the Government in the Senate. After the change of Government she was appointed Leader of the Opposition in the Senate. Penny is the first woman to hold both these roles.


Ronnie C. Chan
Global Co-Chair, Asia Society

Ronnie Chan is the Global Co-Chair of Asia Society, Chairman of Asia Society Hong Kong Center and Chairman of Hang Lung Group Limited and its subsidiary, Hang Lung Properties Limited. Both are publicly listed companies in Hong Kong, dealing in real estate investment, development and management. Founded in 1960, the Hang Lung Group expanded its reach into mainland China in 1992. Following successes in Shanghai, from 2005 to 2009 Hang Lung has been investing US$5 billion and building commercial complexes in several Chinese cities, including Tianjin, Shenyang, Jinan, Wuxi and Dalian. Mr. Chan also co-founded the privately held Morningside group which, in the past two decades, has owned and managed businesses across a wide range of sectors around the world. In addition, Mr. Chan is one of the world’s leading global philanthropists, actively involved with many non-profit organisations.

Master of Ceremonies 

Haidi Lun 

Anchor, Bloomberg

Haidi Lun is the Sydney anchor for "Daybreak Australia", Bloomberg Television's flagship morning programme, covering market-moving business and finance news in Australia as it kicks off the Asia-Pacific trading day.  Haidi has conducted in-depth interviews with many leading business, financial and corporate newsmakers including Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan, Nobel Laureate for Economics Angus Deaton and World Bank Managing Director Bertrand Badre. She has also reported live from major events such as the annual National People's Congress sessions in Beijing.

Prior to joining Bloomberg, Haidi was the Senior Business Anchor for Channel NewsAsia in Singapore. Haidi began her career as a lawyer in Melbourne before making the switch to journalism as a Business Anchor with CCTV News in Beijing, and subsequently to Fox Business Network as its Asia Markets Reporter. 


Hugh Morgan AC
Founding Chairman of Asia Society Australia
Hugh Morgan is Principal of First Charnock Pty Ltd. He is the Chairman of the Order of Australia Association Foundation Limited; Advisory Councillor of Asia Society Australia and Trustee Emeritus of The Asia Society New York; Patron of Creativity Australia; Patron of The Song Room; Chairman of the JNF Environmental Scholarship Fund and President of the National Gallery of Victoria Foundation. He was a Director of the Board of the Reserve Bank of Australia for 14 years. From 2003-2005 he was President of the Business Council of Australia. He is a past Executive Committee Member of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development and a Past Co-Chair of the Commonwealth Business Council and continuing Director Emeritus.


Richard Woolcott AC
Founding Director of Asia Society Australia
Richard Woolcott AC is an author and former diplomat. He is a Founding Director of Asia Society Australia and continues to serve on the Advisory Council. He has held positions as Australia’s ambassador to Indonesia and The Philippines, as well as High Commissioner to Malaysia, Ghana and Singapore. Dick was the Australian Ambassador to the United Nations from 1982 to 1988, and served as the President of the United Nations Security Council for Australia’s term in November 1985. Richard has also served as Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) from 1988 to 1992.


The Hon Warwick Smith AM
Global Trustee, Asia Society and Immediate Past Chairman, Asia Society Australia
The Hon Warwick Smith AM has been involved with Asia Society Australia since its establishment 20 years ago, most recently as its long-standing Chairman for over a decade. He is Senior Managing Director and Chairman for Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (NSW and ACT), and Chairman, Advisory Board of Australian Capital Equity. Mr Smith was an Executive Director at Macquarie Bank (1998–2006), Chairman of the Australia-China Business Council (2003–2006) and a member of the Federal Parliament from December 1984 to March 1993 and 1996 to October 1998 when he was Minister for Sport, Territories and Local Government and Member assisting the Prime Minister for the Sydney Olympics (1996–1998) and Minister for Family Services (1996–1998).

Tickets for Celebrating 20 are SOLD OUT. 

More about Celebrating Asia Society Australia's 20th anniversary >>

Support our mission

Proceeds from Celebrating 20 will support Asia Society Australia’s programs across public policy, next generation leadership, arts, business and education. Your gift will be tax deductible. Asia Society Australia is a registered charity under the Australian Charities and Non-Profit Commission and has a Deductible Gift Recipient Status.  

Presenting Partner


Foundation Partners



Official Time and Jewelry Partner

Gold Partner


Cultural Partner

Event Details

Wed 30 Aug 2017
6:30 - 10:30 p.m.

Four Seasons Hotel Sydney, 199 George Street, Sydney, NSW, 2000

Tickets now on sale
Add to Calendar 20170830T083000 20170830T123000 UTC Asia Society: Celebrating 20 Gala Dinner - SOLD OUT Four Seasons Hotel Sydney, 199 George Street, Sydney, NSW, 2000