President, Baker Real Estate Inc.
Sector: Private Sector
Discipline: Real Estate Brokerage
Magic Moment: I became involved in the condominium industry in the 1980s, when Martin Atkins hired me for his marketing business. I knew right away that condominiums would be the way of the future for the Greater Toronto Area, and I was excited to be part of it. Eventually, Martin moved to the United States. I had heard about Pat Baker, who was having a major influence in the industry, and I approached her. She was gracious, optimistic and offered me the opportunity to continue pursuing my dream at Baker Real Estate Incorporated. This was a magic moment for me. I eventually assumed the role of President, and I reached another career pinnacle when I became CEO.
Key Influence: The answer is easy: my father, Regimental Sergeant Major Henry Dixon. I grew up in Ireland. My father did tours of duty in Cypress and the Belgian Congo, served with Canadian military under the United Nations flag in Katanga and Cypress, and was honored with the Nobel Peace Medal. He showed me by example that anything is possible when you work hard and keep your integrity. He also passed along to me an appreciation for what it takes to be a true leader – a genuine caring for the people around you.
Next Big Challenge As An Industry: Challenges posed by evolving demographics and land shortages across the GTA are something our industry faces continually. In addition, although Toronto condos are reasonably priced relative to the rest of the world, the increase in average prices over the last few years has created a certain public perception. We have to educate the public more on the value of today’s well designed condos.
Secret Talent: Most people do not know that in Ireland, I started singing at the age of 12, and I belonged to an all-girl singing group called Maxi, Dick and Twink.
On Championing Others… I make a point to listen to everyone’s input, value it, treat it with respect and act on it when appropriate. To lead by example, I am passionate about what I do, and I show it. Real passion in the business world is so rare today that it gives you an immediate competitive advantage.
One word that captures you: Focused