Dixie Fortis


Dixie Fortis of Fairhope passed away on Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013.

She is survived by her husband, Jerry; her brother and sister-in-law, Roger and Nancy Buyan; her niece, Jane Tuthill and her family; her stepchildren, Cherie Fortis and Callin Fortis; and her cat, Babe.

Dixie and Jerry moved into their Fairhope home on the fateful morning of Sept. 11, 2001. They had moved from Chicago where she and her husband enjoyed lengthy and highly successful careers at nationally acclaimed advertising agencies, McCann Erickson and Needham Harper & Steers.

During her time, her writing was the advertising voice for such notable national brands as Betty Crocker, Butterball Turkey, Caterpillar Corporate, Encyclopedia Britannica, Kraft, Morton Salt, Household Finance, Johnson Wax Favor, Chi-Chi’s restaurant chain, Beatrice Foods Bonkers and others.

In 1990, she and her husband opened their own advertising agency, Fortis, Fortis & Associates, which enjoyed great success and recognition and was highly ranked in Inc. magazine’s top 500 fastest growing private companies.

Dixie was one of advertising’s great creative talents. She was named Advertising Woman of the Year and voted by her peers as one of the country’s top 100 creative talents.

She won countless Clio Awards, advertising’s equivalent to the Oscar, as well as Cannes Film Festival Awards.

She was one of the founding members of the prestigious Chicago Network, an organization recognizing Chicago’s most notable female professionals.

In Fairhope, she was known and recognized for her outstanding work as a painter, having been shown in numerous art galleries and hung in many Baldwin County homes. She also won Best of Show at both the Eastern Shore Art Center and Daphne’s Bay Rivers Art Guild.

Dixie regularly regaled her family and friends with a masterfully written and incisive series of observations on Fairhope and the area called the Fairhope Journal.

Her writings, her works of art and her countless professional achievements remain on earth behind her as living testimony of her great talent, great soul and life.

A memorial service to honor Dixie’s life will be held Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013, from 4 until 6 p.m., at Wolfe-Bayview Funeral Home in Fairhope.

Arrangements by Wolfe-Bayview Funeral Home, Fairhope.