The Life and Philanthropy of Dick DeVos: How His Generosity Is Helping Millions

Believing in the American Dream



27 years ago, in 1990, Dick DeVos and his wife founded the Dick and Betsy Devos Family Foundation, a foundation dedicated to putting money back into the community and enriching the lives of the people. To date, they have charitably donated over $138 million to put towards the betterment of the community, and the foundations upon which the nation is built. To date, DeVos has given 26% of the total amount to schools and education, with over $2 million going towards education reform alone. The next largest sum that has been donated goes towards the arts and cultural focuses, with 14% of the total donated amount funding projects such as the DeVos Institute of Arts Management.



The rest of their donations are split among various other focuses such as churches, health care, leadership development, and improvements to the civic centers. These contributions are particularly apparent in Michigan, which received 48% of the $11.5 million dollars donated in 2015 alone. The remaining 52% of those donations went to national and international improvements. Additionally, Mr. DeVos is an avid believer of donations without additional strings attached; as long as the money is going towards the benefit of everyone, there is no reason not to donate at all. He also includes his children in planning future donations, as their ideas about how the money could be spent helping people are seen as a new, fresh approach to bettering the community.



Who is Dick DeVos?



Richard “Dick” DeVos Jr. is the co-founder of the Amway Corporations which serves as a central enterprise to his products and dealings. He began working for Amway in 1974, where he held various operating positions until 1984 when he was promoted to vice-president. This endeavor would prove to be short-lived, as in 1989 DeVos left the Amway Corporation to pursue business with the Windquest Group. During his time with Windquest, he acquired the management of the Orlando Magic Basketball Franchise, now under the ownership of the DeVos family. Two years later, in 1993 he succeeded his father and became the president of Amway where he reformed the business dealings to distribute products more efficiently and extend the company’s reach over 50 different countries internationally.


He returned to Windquest in 2002 and pursued the role of Governor of Michigan in 2006. He, unfortunately, could not secure the political role, losing to the Democratic party nominee by a paltry 14 points. Despite this loss, he continues to work towards improving areas within Michigan through generous donations.


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