Discovering Joy

Feb 17, 2022

As an oncologist, Dr. Richard Deming meets his patients at one of the most challenging moments in their lives. From his patients with cancer, he has learned valuable lessons about courage, grace under pressure, and joy.

"In my profession, mortality is in the room from the very beginning," said Richard, medical director of MercyOne Cancer Center in Des Moines. "I believe a life well-lived does not exclude adversity. The path of joy goes right through the path of suffering."

Richard’s philosophy about joy guides his approach to life, compassionate patient care, and philanthropy. He recently committed a leadership-level estate gift to create The Deming Initiative: A Path to Joy Through Social Impact. The gift supports Drake’s Changemaker priority by creating grants for students and faculty whose projects advance social change and, ultimately, create a path to joy for those impacted by the work.

"I want this fund to provide Drake faculty and students with experiences they wouldn’t otherwise have," he said. "I hope these grants help them reach above and beyond what they think is possible and realize the deeper sense of joy that can come from helping others."

Headshot of Dr. Richard Deming

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