MRO Magazine

Obituary: John Dixon Campbell

Orangeville, ON -- John Dixon Campbell, 56, global leader of the Physical Asset Management Practice of Pricewaterho...

Orangeville, ON — John Dixon Campbell, 56, global leader of the Physical Asset Management Practice of PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting in Toronto, died at his farm in Orangeville, Ont., on Nov. 11, 2002.

Cattleman, consultant, artist, athlete, winemaker — Mr. Campbell lived and loved large. He was born in Sydney, N.S., and attended the University of Toronto where he graduated in 1970 in Metallurgical Engineering and Material Science.

After graduation, Mr. Campbell worked for INCO in Thompson, Man., and at Carborundum in Niagara Falls, Ont., before joining Coopers and Lybrand of Toronto in 1980. This firm became PwC Consulting, where he, as partner, developed a highly successful international practice in maintenance management. He was awarded the coveted Excaliber Award by the International Manufacturing Practice for his leading work in this field.

Mr. Campbell had an eloquent pen and authored the highly successful, widely distributed and globally recognized book Uptime, published in 1995, that is used in many organizations to alert senior management to the importance of maintenance within the operation of an enterprise. Undergraduate and graduate students around the world became aware of the importance of enterprise asset management through this book.


He also had contributed articles on maintenance management in the late 1980s for Machinery & Equipment MRO, as well as being helpful in guiding the magazine’s editorial content after its launch in 1985.

In 1998 Mr. Campbell co-authored (with A. Raouf and S. O. Duffuaa) the book Planning and Control of Maintenance Systems: Modeling and Analysis. In 2001 he published Maintenance Excellence: Optimizing Equipment Life Cycle Decisions (co-edited with A. K. S. Jardine). He also served on the editorial board of the Journal of Quality in Maintenance Engineering.

Not only did he lead a global practice in maintenance management and publish extensively, he also gave of himself willingly to speak at conferences and spearhead the creation of an annual Canadian maintenance conference. In addition, he initiated a Certificate Program in Physical Asset Management at his alma mater, the University of Toronto, where he also found time to give guest lectures to undergraduate and graduate students.

Mr. Campbell was perhaps most himself at his farm, Dalriada Meadows, where he and his wife, Bev, developed a line of championship Herefords. He was an avid skier and sailor and loved the outdoors. The ultimate host, he welcomed all, and he and Bev opened their hearts and their home to family, friends and travellers, including numerous stray and homeless animals.

John Dixon Campbell will be dearly missed by all who were fortunate to encounter him in any of the fascinating dimensions that composed his life.