Welcome to Dixieland: A look at pro wrestling's female boss

Thursday November 21st, 2013
Dixie Carter argues with TNA world champion A. J. Styles over his expired contract.
Courtesy of Lee South, TNA Entertainment/SI

"I remember him pulling me out of school at [age] 13 when he was going to be in the Army surplus business, driving to Kansas with him to pick up the supplies, and him having me drive home while he sat in the backseat with his calculator, figuring out how much money we were going to make," said Carter. "This is what we did and we were going to make it."

TNA World Champion A. J. Styles is known for his acrobatic performances; here with Kurt Angle.
Courtesy of Lee South, TNA Entertainment/SI

One of Dixie's first assignments took her to the Alamo, where client IMAX was shooting its first docudrama. Dixie met Serg Salinas, a singing cowboy who worked on the ranch that held shows three times a day to commemorate the venue's history. She was 20; he 19. They dated off and on and were married a few years later.

Gail Kim beat ODB at Bound for Glory on Oct. 20 to claim the TNA Women's Knockout World title.
Courtesy of Lee South, TNA Entertainment/SI

"I think she's really proud and she gets that it's a business," said Dixie of her replacement-in-the-making. "She'll watch the show and take some notes and she's actually come up with some good ideas. It's fun to share that with her. I think recently they've come to realize that this is something different, something special that we don't take for granted."

Pro wrestling icon Hulk Hogan became TNA's most prolific signing in 2009, staying on with the company until October 2013.
Chris Carlson/AP/SI

Dixie, a natural on-camera with her inviting Southern charm, finally stopped fighting the requests, thinking it would be the best move for the company.

Dixie Carter arm-in-arm with 1996 Olympic wrestling gold medalist and TNA superstar Kurt Angle.
Courtesy of Lee South, TNA Entertainment/SI

Enemies and Allies

Kurt Angle, a 1996 Olympic Games wrestling gold medalist, joined TNA in 2006.
Courtesy of Lee South, TNA Entertainment/SI

"I want them to say those things," said Carter, with a wink. "That means I'm doing my job -- without really running the company into the ground, of course."

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