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Through a nostalgic reflection of his Iowa farm upbringing, Professor Keeney takes the reader through his personal and professional journey of understanding the true meaning of agricultural change. Despite earning some of the highest honors bestowed by his profession, Dr. Keeney became increasingly disillusioned with industrial agriculture. Through his leadership at Iowa State University’s Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, he regained his confidence in the future of a sustainable agricultural system that will replace today’s factory farms.
Dennis R. Keeney
“This slim volume grabs you from the beginning. Dr. Keeney presents us with an acute analysis of the transformation of agriculture as well as a moving memoir.” — Cornelia Butler Flora, Distinguished Professor of Sociology, Iowa State University
“The Keeney Place: A Life in the Heartland is a wonderful story of how a farm boy from Iowa, formed by a great idea, can give us a better world.”— Paul W. Johnson, from the Foreword
"Nostalgia is a longing for the past. Keeney most certainly misses his family and his family farm, but what he describes in his book is really a search to clearly define his vision for Midwest agriculture—and his place in working toward that vision." —Teresa Opheim, Executive Director, Practical Farmers of Iowa
Dennis R. Keeney
Dennis R. Keeney is emeritus professor of Agronomy and Agriculture and Biosystems Engineering at Iowa State University. He has degrees in Soil Science from Iowa State University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and was on the Soil Science and Water Chemistry faculties at UW-Madison from 1966–1988.
He was the first Director of the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, Iowa State University. He is past president of the Soil Science Society of America and the American Society of Agronomy and is a Fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science.
Since his retirement from Iowa State in 2000, he has held positions as Senior Fellow for the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy in Minneapolis and the Department of Soil, Water and Climate, University of Minnesota, St. Paul. He has also served on the Boards of the Thomas Jefferson Agriculture Institute and Food and Water Watch. In 2008 he was appointed Visiting Scholar, Center for a Livable Future, Johns Hopkins University.
Dr. Keeney and his wife Betty travel widely and are sometimes found in Ames, sometimes in Minneapolis, and sometimes elsewhere.