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WUIS Archive: Alan Dixon Was Gracious In Defeat


Former U.S. Senator Alan Dixon died Sunday in his southern Illinois home.

The 86-year-old Belleville Democrat spent more than four decades in public office - 30 years in state government before going on to serve in Congress from 1981 to 1993.

But Chicago Democrat Carol Moseley Braun unseated Dixon in 1992.  Braun became the first African American woman to serve in the Senate.

On March 17th, 1992, Dixon congratulated Braun for her win, and bowed out of public office with a certain grace uncharacteristic of politicians who've just suffered defeat at the polls.

In reflecting on Dixon's life and legacy, we re-visit Dixon's concession speech, and share an archived conversation with the late Senator, who spoke with WUIS' Rich Bradley in December 1992:

Senator Dick Durbin said Monday Dixon was known for his honesty, hard work and commitment to Illinois.

Durbin credited the late Senator for being the first statewide Democrat to voluntarily make a full disclosure of his financial holdings... and for starting bipartisan Illinois congressional lunches... which continue, even today.
Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan said Dixon was a "great leader and representative who always put the public's interests first.''

Alan Dixon was 86.   Visitation will be Sunday from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Lindenwood University's auditorium in Belleville.  The funeral will be Monday at 11 a.m. at the same location.   A private burial for family and close friends will follow.

Peter has a diverse background in public, independent and commercial media production. Beginning in 2011, Peter served as reporter and “Morning Edition” host for WUIS. He completed his work at WUIS in 2014. Prior to his start in public radio, he covered the Illinois legislature for NBC affiliate WANDTV-17 and helped launch Phenom Features, a non-profit apprenticeship film studio. Peter hails from Oswego, Ill., where he grew up watching WTTW-11/PBS.
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