Philanthropic Work of the DeVos Family

Born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Dick DeVos is an entrepreneur who started managing businesses at an early age. He has a bachelors’ degree in business Administration from Northwood University and several honorary doctorates from Grove City College, Central Michigan University, and the Northwood University. Dick began working for the family business, Amway as one the vice presidents overseeing the operations of the company in eighteen different companies. Before becoming a vice president, he held positions in marketing, finance, research and development, sales, and manufacturing departments. He later joined Orlando Magic, a National Basketball Association that his family also owned. He was named the president and CEO who would run and make critical decisions for the NBA. As a Republican, he was being considered for a seat on the Michigan’s Board of Education with over a million votes.

In 1993, he succeeded his father as the new president of Amway after quitting Orlando Magic. He made new changes to the company and recreated it to Alticor with operations expanding to over 50 countries on six continents. This global status saw the company set new industry standards in all the markets they ventured. Before retiring from the company, he had managed to raise the sales to $4.5 billion. He later moved to The Windquest Group, an investment management firm venturing in different sectors. He was elected the president. The firm collaborated with the Electra Therm Company that produced a technology, The Green Machine that converted heat into electricity. Windquest was responsible for distribution.

Apart from the political donations that the DeVos have made over the years to the Republican candidates, their foundation has committed to helping charitable organizations. Dick DeVos and his wife Betsy are lifting the veil in millions to philanthropy, channeled through their foundation. These contributions add up to $139 million, with $11.6 contributed in 2015 alone. The philanthropy work runs through the family, with Dick’s father and siblings donating a total of $104 million in 2015, making it in the list of the America’s Top Givers. Among the sectors that they donate to, education always comes first with over 26% of the total charity contributions. Dick thinks that the school system offered was not fulfilling the American dream, and that is why his foundation made it a priority. Some of the beneficiaries include Michigan schools, Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Compass College of Cinematic Arts, West Michigan Aviation Academy, Potter’s House in Wyoming, Detroit Charter School Company New Urban Learning, and Dick DeVos’ alma mater Northwood University in Midland. Their main aim was to better the education system to reach every child in America with the help of the talented educators. The DeVos insist to having been transparent always about their giving even before Betsy’s Education Secretary Nomination.

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