A skilled professional in the hospitality industry and an enthusiastic volunteer who dedicated themselves to Albuquerque

Dixie Burch, a successful caterer, director of convention services, and restaurant manager, passed away in April. She and her husband immigrated from Oklahoma to Albuquerque in 1954 and opened A&W Her Root Beer Stand in West Central. Burch became a star in New Mexico’s hospitality industry, equally known for her tireless devotion to volunteerism. She was involved in various organizations and causes such as the Junior League, Albuquerque Opera Guild, and the March of Dimes.

Burch was a full-time volunteer and actively recruited her daughter, Kelly, into volunteering from a young age. She organized the grand opening celebration of the Albuquerque Convention Center, a lavish four-day event. Burch’s catering work took her to various hotels in Albuquerque, and she became a household name in the industry.

Burch was a creative and hardworking woman who held various positions of leadership. She expanded the New Mexico Arts and Crafts Fair into an ongoing and thriving tourist destination, and her mother was the heart and spirit behind the founding of the symphony concert. Her survivors include her daughter Kelly, her husband Kevin, her sister Kay Matthews, and brother Edward Matthews. She was predeceased by her son Brad Birch.

Burch was also known for her love of food and hospitality, with a particular fondness for Southern cuisine. Her cooking was loved and appreciated by many, including Prince Charles, who attended a university event in Albuquerque. Burch and her team created a dish called Montezuma Chicken, which was popular for years after the event.

Burch’s travels were always filled with adventure and laughter, and she was always checking her phone for the best local eateries. She loved music, opera and road trips. She had a passion for volunteering and community involvement and was always willing to help anyone in need. She will be deeply missed.

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