Local Author Panel

AViD panel
Join the AViD livestream via Zoom! The waiting room will open at 6:55 PM on Wednesday, May 25. The password is "avid". 

Tuesday, June 7 | 7:00 PM | Central Library

Joining us will be a panel of popular, distinguished local figures who are also published authors: Dr. Richard Deming, Neil Hamilton, and Jim Autry. We’ll be discussing their works and how their unique experiences in Des Moines and Iowa led them to where they are now.


Dr. Richard Deming is medical director of MercyOne Richard Deming Cancer Center in Des Moines. Dr. Deming is known in the community for the compassionate care he provides cancer patients and their families. He is involved in many national, state, and community organizations and is the recipient of numerous awards.

Dr. Deming's book Above and Beyond Cancer is about the philosophical journeys of ordinary people - caregivers, patients, survivors and loved ones - whose lives have been touched by cancer. It features insights from Dr. Deming, the founder of Above + Beyond Cancer, as well as excerpts from members of Above + Beyond Cancer who have hiked the jagged peaks of Mt. Everest and other mountains with the group.


Neil Hamilton is an emeritus professor of law and the former director of the Agricultural Law Center at Drake University in Des Moines. He retired from full-time teaching in 2019 after thirty-eight years focusing on agriculture and food law. Teaching, writing, and consulting work led to travels around the globe and across the state and nation. His advice is sought by Presidential candidates, cabinet secretaries, reporters, and others looking for insight on issues involving farming, rural society, conservation, and land tenure.

His new book, The Land Remains, blends personal memoir, a history of Iowa land conservation, and an analysis of contemporary issues of soil health, water quality, public lands, and future challenges to tell the story how land shapes our lives. The Land Remains identifies reasons to be optimistic—we can find hope and resiliency from the land by examining how new attitudes toward land can address past abuses.


Jim Autry is an author, poet, business coach, and former Fortune 500 executive. He's authored 15 books, including Everyday Virtues: Classic Tales to Read with Kidshis first father/son collaboration. It was co-authored with his son, Rick. Jim's previous works include books on servant leadership, gratitude, business, and poetry.

Event Info

  • Admission is free.
  • Doors open at 6:00 PM.
  • Seating is first-come, first-served.
  • Free parking is available:
    • In the Des Moines Public Library parking garage, located on Grand Ave.
    • On the surface lot on the corner of 10th St. and Grand Ave., across from the library.
  • At the end of the program, there will be a question and answer period. A book signing will follow.
  • Books will be available to purchase before and after the program courtesy of Beaverdale Books.