Beaverdale Books News Release
January 12, 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Des Moines):
Beaverdale Books Announces New Co-Owner
Manager Hunter Gillum Becomes Bookstore Partner.
“Ask Hunter” may be the most-commonly-heard phrase at this long-cherished institution located in the heart of Beaverdale, so it was not a surprise when owner Alice Meyer announced Hunter Gillum is now a co-owner. Needing a book club recommendation? Ask Hunter. Need to know how long a special order will take? Ask Hunter. Need to know if a best-seller is worth all the hype? Ask Hunter. Staff members challenged to find an obscure or missing title, ask Hunter.
Long the go-to guy, Gillum inspires staff with his extensive knowledge of the book industry, educates customers with his vast reading experience, and entertains readers with his hearty laugh when discussing his favorite recent read. He claims he “has always had a love of reading, a passion for books, and a dream of opening a bookstore.”
A native of Indianola, Gillum graduated from high school in 2011. He went on to the University of Iowa graduating in 2015 with a BBA in Business Management and a minor in English. While in Iowa City he worked at the Iowa City Public Library and frequented Prairie Lights Bookstore. Upon graduating he moved back to Indianola looking to do something in the book world. He asked to meet with Alice Meyer to discuss bookstores.
A week later, Meyer called him back and offered him a job, working Fridays, every other Saturday and picking up additional hours whenever he could. By the holiday season of that year, he was a fulltime employee. Then over the course of his tenure, he was promoted to buyer/manager for Beaverdale Books.
This friendly, independent bookstore celebrated its 15-year anniversary. Owner Alice Meyer, who opened the store on July 8, 2006, says it has weathered a challenging economy, the introduction of e-books, two summers with major street detours, and the ever-changing buying habits of readers. When the pandemic began, the store closed its door to the public but continued to serve its reading community, offering free delivery and curbside pickup. Loyal customers continued buying from the store and will likely remember that Hunter was usually the face behind the mask. As Meyer finalizes the paperwork, she admits, “It will be hard to let go a little bit, but I am thrilled to bring Hunter on as co-owner. He has shown these past six years that he is capable of bringing Beaverdale Books to the next level and the next generation.”
She notes that passing the torch will be easier because, “Hunter has developed great relationships with customers, authors, and publishers, and we’ve grown immensely since he began working here. His new ideas and fresh perspective will serve us well into the future.” She also is “looking forward to having some free time” on her calendar while still actively participating in the business. Best of all, when someone wonders what it’s like to own a bookstore, she too can say, “Ask Hunter.”
For more information:
Jan Danielson Kaiser
Events & Marketing Coordinator
515.279.5400 store | 515-491-4791 mobile