nita-members-wideshotThe current NITA organization began in 1980 when several telecommunications managers met and discussed the possibility of a regular gathering to share ideas among each other. An earlier group had been formed to fight rate hikes, but this new organization was to be an educational group – a support group. In 1981, after several planning meetings, the Fort Wayne Telecommunications Association elected its first board of directors and began having monthly meetings. In March of 1982, FWTA held its first “Telecommunications Week” with an official proclamation by Mayor Win Moses at a cocktail party at the Summit Club. Our keynote speaker, Jim Nelson of ROLM Corporation, discussed “the changing role of telecommunications in business today”. For the next three days, members staffed a booth at Glenbrook Square and distributed literature about FWTA.


Many changes have taken place since that first year. In 1985, the name was changed to Northern Indiana Telecommunications Association to reflect the growing regional membership. The meetings were moved from the Chamber of Commerce building to Hall’s Guesthouse. The Telecommunications Awareness Week continued its kickoff with a cocktail party; seminars were offered to the members, and the general public was presented with information on timely communication and management topics.

In 1988, the format changed again. The monthly business meetings alternated with mini-seminars. This allowed time for other in-depth discussion of a particular topic. The mini-seminars included panel discussions, product comparisons, and explanations of new technology in an informal setting. These educational seminars are now presented monthly during the luncheon.

The organization continues to evolve to meet the needs of its members. In recent years, the noon-time seminar has been supplemented with “field trips” to various telecommunications organizations, and a greater emphasis has been placed on the convergence of voice, data and video communications. As a result of this blending, the name of the organization was changed to Networking and Information Technology Association in February 2003.