Phil Dixon is this week’s Who’s Who. Phil has worked for Notre Dame since 1986, first for four years at the Morris Inn and then for Building Services. He currently works in Stanford Hall. Phil was born in South Bend, but raised in Indianapolis. He tells me what it was like growing up there: “It was real nice. I went to a school there, threw the shot put for track, and had a lot of friends and girlfriends. That was back in the day though.” He laughs.

In Indianapolis “they also have very good churches,” he adds, explaining to me, “I come from a family raised in church. Mother was strict, but taught us a lot.” He tells me about the importance of going to church: “It is important in order to have a relationship with God and to learn His word in this lost and dying world. I couldn’t make it without Him. He is my help, my strength, my everything. I sound like a preacher don’t I?” I respond “Preach it brother.” He laughs and says “It is the truth, man, let me tell you we wouldn’t know God without His word.”

Back in 1986 Phil’s father became ill, so he returned to South Bend. “My father was sick so I came back here. I applied for a job at Notre Dame and stayed ever since.” Phil met his wife Carmen here in South Bend. They were married on October 1st. “I dated her 13 years ago. We were reacquainted at a Martin’s grocery store. She called me five minutes after we talked and we’ve been on love street ever since,” he says. Phil loves spending time with his wife and their four children.  As he tells me, “I love to go out to movies and dinner with my wife. It’s been just beautiful. We go to church together, go to parks with the children. We try to do everything together.”

In the basement of Stanford, Phil has a desk that is covered with pictures of his family and Michael Jordan. Phil shares the opinion of a lot of us when it comes to Michael. He laments, “I like basketball, but after Michael Jordan retired it took something out of the game.” On his time off Phil also likes to fix up classic cars and buy and sell horses. “I saw a friend of mine about 15 years ago riding,” he comments, continuing, “It looked like so much fun. So they showed me how to ride. It is a lot of fun. Just wonderful. We go to rodeos and stuff like that.” I ask him if he considers himself a cowboy: “Oh yeah definitely,” he responds.

Phil likes working for Notre Dame. Even so, like many campus staff, he says it is hard to get ahead. “Some things could be a little better. Everything just keeps going up because of inflation. Car insurance, health, dental, food, gas, cost of living, everything just keeps going up,” he explains. As he puts it, there are ways of getting ahead, but then you have to sacrifice elsewhere. He explains, “I could get a second job but that’s taking time away from the family.” Despite the difficulties Phil is grateful. He tells me, “The university has been good to me and I appreciate it, sometimes things can be hard living from paycheck to paycheck, but I’ve met some good friends and good people like Fr. Moss and Fr. Carey.”

His advice to the students is “learn all you can because you are the future of today. You are our doctors, our lawyers, senators, presidents. Try to be fair in all your ways and ask God to direct your path. Wait. Wait… Amen.” he says with a smile.

After gradutating this year, Kelly Mason hopes to get her STD in Rome. Contact her at