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COVER STORY


became more active in their adult years. Two settled into the business.His daughter, Suzette Miller, is the office manager and treasurer, while his son, Jimmy, is vice president and is in charge of purchasing and maintenance. The company’s president is Loren Knittel. Another daughter, Sheila Foertsch, became


the executive director of theWyoming Trucking Association and has worked alongside her father for many years in association activities. According toFoertsch, Dixon has a number of qualities that have enabled him to succeed as a trucking company owner, including his commitment to customer service and his innate understanding of everything that occurs in the business. “He perseveres, and when he has a


goal, he works towards it, and when he sees opportunities, he’s able to think them through and take them quickly,” she added. “And he accepts challenges, andI think is able to persevere through challenges, too.” Three of son Jimmy’s children followed


a similar path to his – first working odd jobs at DixonBrothers as young people and then working full-time as adults. Dixon’s grandsonAustin is involved in purchasing and procurement, grandson Joe works in the shop as a fabricator, and granddaughter Annika is an assistant to Miller and soon will assume responsibility for the firm’s accounting operations. Having much of the family employed at


the company he built is a source of great pride for Dixon.When he goes to work, much of his family is there, and he’s confident they are prepared to run Dixon Brothers on their own. “They started working for the company when they were extremely small,” he said. “They’ve come up from sweeping the shop floor and cutting grass and the weeds around the shop to running the business, so they pretty well know what it takes.” The company, and the family, suffered


a blow in 2002 when Dixon’s brother, Jerry, suddenly took ill and died as a result of a blood disorder and a growth on his adrenal gland. The loss was personal of course, but members of the company, including Dixon, worked together to take over his role. One constant through all of these years


has been Dixon’s service to the industry.He served as president of theWyoming Trucking Association in 1977-78, joined the Montana TruckingAssociation in 1983, and served as president of it in 1993-94. This year will be 30 straight years that Dixon Brothers has been a member of the MTA. Meanwhile, he served many years on theAmerican Trucking


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Associations’ board of directors as its vice president fromWyoming.He’s also a longtime officer with theNational Tank Truck Carriers. “Every time we go to another state, first thing we do is join the trucking association.We feel that you need to support the people who are going to be there on the front line when the industry has a need,” he said. Now that he’s “retired,” Dixon might be


slowing down a little, but he’s not stopping.He and Kathryn travel to trucking industry-related events. The man who fell in love with trucks as a teenager now collects trucks from that era. He has about a dozen antique models from


the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s, including that very first truck he bought in 1960.He also owns six classic pickup trucks, including a Diamond T pickup from 1949, the last year the company produced the vehicles.He and Kathryn spend most weekends in a log home they built north ofNewcastle about six years ago. During the summers, they ride all-terrain vehicles into the BlackHillsNational Forest. During winters, they ride snowmobiles, a hobby they started when Dixon bought his first in 1970. “You get out into the wilderness area where the snow is deep. You just can’t describe the scenery that you see there,” he said.RW


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