A. Terrance Dickens is breaking ground as the new president and chief operating officer of Bixby Co., which develops and manages commercial real estate.
Dickens becomes the sixth president and the first non-Bixby to head up the 100-year-old family firm that at one time controlled much of the land that became Long Beach.
Dickens inherits a lot of history by taking on the new position.
“At one point, Bixby owned most everything in Long Beach and some of the surrounding cities,” Dickens said about the company, which has two neighborhoods named after it Bixby Knolls and Bixby Heights. “You can’t drive around Long Beach today without seeing the Bixby name on streets, parks and buildings.”
Prior to joining Bixby, Dickens was vice president and director of real estate development for Pacific Theatres Realty Corp. in Los Angeles. He oversaw management of income properties, condemnation, acquisitions and property financing during his nine-year stint at the firm.
Dickens also was a senior vice president and director of real estate with Downey Savings. In addition, he is an adjunct professor at California State University, Fullerton.
What captured the attention of Bixby was Dickens’s involvement in the redevelopment of former drive-in theatres in Long Beach. Faced with a limited amount of land to develop in Long Beach, the firm is now concentrating on redevelopment in the city.
The company mainly has been involved with the development of local shopping centers, business parks and commercial properties.
Dickens takes over the position from Jean Bixby Smith, who held the title of president for 13 years. The company was founded by her great-great-grandfather, Lewellyn Bixby.
Joe Bel Bruno