Milt Adams, a pioneer in DIY publishing and the founding publisher of Beavers Pond Press died Sunday. He was 84 years old. Adams, who spent much of his career working in corporate America, including Archer Daniels Midland and the Carlson Companies, founded Beavers Pond in his house in suburban Minneapolis in 1998, when he was 70 years old. According to the company’s Web site, Adams was acquainted with many authors “writing books of lasting value” who were “shut out of booksellers and wholesalers.” He founded Beavers Pond to provide his marketing and production expertise in shepherding self-published authors through the process of producing, promoting, and distributing books in a professional manner. Adams was renowned for his old-fashioned, even courtly, demeanor and approach to publishing, sealing many deals simply with a conversation and a handshake.

Adams retired in early 2011, and sold the company to Tom Kerber, the current publisher and CEO. Beavers Pond has published 700 books in the past 14 years, and currently employs six people. Kerber describes Adams as a man who “enjoyed people and really connected with them."

A memorial service to be held in the Twin Cities is pending.