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Former State Sen. Larry Dixon has died

Dixon represented Montgomery and Elmore Counties in the Alabama Legislature for decades.

Longtime State Senator Larry Dixon died late Thursday night. Dixon represented Montgomery and Elmore Counties in the Alabama Legislature for decades. He also was a longtime member of the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners. He was 78 years old.

Dixon, a Republican, represented State Senate District 25 from 1982 to 2010. Prior to his service in the Senate, he was a member of the Alabama House of Representatives from 1978 to 1982, and he served on the Montgomery City Council from 1975 to 1978.

“I served twenty of my years in the Legislature with Larry. Larry was a great friend, a great legislator, a great husband to Gaynell, a great father to his children, he was just a great guy,” said former State Rep. Perry Hooper Jr., R-Montgomery. “He was a staunch conservative.”

“He started the contract review committee,” Hooper said. “He wanted to make sure that every one of those government contracts was spent to help the people of Alabama. I played a lot of golf with Larry. We went on trips together. I will miss Larry. We all will miss Larry.”

Dixon had a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in history from Washington State University.

In the Senate, Dixon served on the Confirmations Committee, as the Alabama Senate Minority Leader Designee, the Finance and Taxation Education Committee, the Governmental Affairs Committee, the Health Committee, and Veterans and Military Affairs Committee.

Dixon retired from the Senate in 2010, ironically the year that Republicans took control of the Legislature after 135 years of Democratic control. He was succeeded by State Sen. Dick Brewbaker, R-Montgomery, who served two terms.

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“He was a real gentleman: a man of good will and good word,” Brewbaker said of Dixon.

Dixon was the executive director of the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners for 35 years.

Dr. Mark LeQuire, chair of the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners, and William M. Perkins, the executive director of the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners, released a statement on the passing of Dixon.

“The Alabama Board of Medical Examiners is saddened to learn of the death of our former executive director, Larry Dixon,” LeQuire and Perkins wrote. “From 1981 until his retirement in 2016, Larry served as the Board’s executive director and his accomplishments are many. He established the continuing education department at the Medical Association of the State of Alabama. He served four terms on the U.S. Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) and was the first president of the Administrators in Medicine, an organization he helped charter. In 2014, FSMB awarded him its Lifetime Achievement Award, and he was inducted into the Alabama Healthcare Hall of Fame in 2016. When he retired from the Board of Medical Examiners, our building in Montgomery was renamed in his honor as the Dixon-Parker Building.”

“While we mourn Larry Dixon’s passing, we are forever grateful for his distinguished service to the medical profession and to the State of Alabama. He set an incredible example of service for us all. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Gaynell, and his family during this difficult time.”

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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