Rachel Dix grew up in Aberdeen and has always been amazed by the support of the people around her. In a way, those mentorships guided her to where she is today. Rachel currently is the homeownership coordinator at Homes are Possible Inc. (HAPI) and is the executive officer at Aberdeen Home Builders Association. She has also been elected to the NAHB Executive Officers Council Board of Directors, starting the first week of February 2022.
I could sense a hint of pride in Rachel’s voice when she mentioned people refer to her as a “people collector and dot connector.” With her charisma and dedication, she built a growing network of trusted friends, colleagues, and mentors, which is part of the reason why Rachel loves Aberdeen.
Earning the 2020 Emerging Leader Award presented by the Chamber of Commerce at the Community Champions Awards Luncheon gave Rachel even more confidence to reach out to people in our community and connect.
In this Q and A with Rachel, she discusses her work in the housing industry and shares more on her experiences here in Aberdeen.
Q:Why is your work important to you?
A: Being involved in the housing industry feels right. Watching our community grow, educating homebuyers, and protecting the building industry feels right. I’ve found it imperative to find work that fuels your passions. I’m passionate about collaborations and connecting people. None of us work with businesses; we work with people. The people I am able to assist and empower are why my work is so important to me.
My work also allows me to continue my education in so many ways! Between all the hats I wear, I strive to find ways to expand my knowledge and face challenges head on. My work can be rewarding and challenging. I love that! Challenges are not bad. They make us look at new alternatives and find new solutions. I have the chance to do that every day working in the housing industry.
Q:What was the impact of winning the 2020 Emerging Leader Award?
A:It built my confidence to be able to pick up the phone and reach out to new mentors. I have mentors now who, a year and a half ago, I would think ‘I probably shouldn’t call them because I don’t want to bother them.’ I am exploring avenues to learn with and build a network in Aberdeen. I think it has expanded my mentor realm and who I collaborate with, and that is probably the most enjoyable aspect of work, volunteering, and growing our community. Nobody would be where they were if they didn’t find a handful of people to call and mentors to lean on.
Q:What is something that you love about the Aberdeen community?
A:It’s our people! As much as I love to travel, I am always ready to come home. And not just home into our little ranch-style house. I mean home to Aberdeen, to the community we have here. It’s the feelings when you are in Aberdeen that I have never found anywhere else in all the places I have visited. Aberdeen has something special where it doesn’t matter who you call, you are going to get help somewhere. If you start digging around about who is in Aberdeen, we have some of the most influential, exciting, energetic, enthusiastic individuals who are right here, and they are amazing.
Q:What do you like to do in your free time?
A:In my free time, I enjoy exploring the great outdoors. I love hunting, fishing, hiking, and kayaking around the state. At home, I enjoy spending time with my pets and pretending to know how to garden. Coffee conversations are one of my favorite ways to meet people, learning from and learning with new friends always fills my cup!
Q:What are you looking forward to going into 2022?
A:Hands down, finishing my Master of Business Administration degree! I am currently enrolled in an accelerated online program and have plans to finish in February 2022. With work, I’m ready to move forward with expanding homebuyer education courses through Northeastern South Dakota. The past couple years have slowed down goals, but it has not shifted our mission of helping prepare communities for home ownership. I don’t know what challenges and excitement are around the corner, but I’m looking forward to the unknown and collecting more people and connecting more dots! //