The state of Michigan is lucky to have Dick DeVos on its side. The Education Freedom Fund, founded chaired by Mr. DeVos since 1993, has awarded more than 4000 scholarships to underprivileged children in Michigan. Married to Betsy DeVos for the last 35 years, the two of them founded The Dick & Betsy DeVos Family Foundation in 1989. The Foundation serves as a catalyst for growth and viability not only globally, but especially locally.
Dick DeVos brings over 20 years of experience in business to bear in his philanthropic ventures. He is a product of both the Harvard and Wharton Executive Study programs, and after being President of the Amway Corporation for ten years, and Vice President of Amway International prior to that, the company enjoyed record profits during his tenure there. He understands how businesses work, whether it’s a for-profit company like Amway International, a non-profit educational fund, or a revitalization of downtown Grand Rapids (including a $75M downtown arena and $212M convention center) and the improvements of regional health care (to the tune of $90M for a Medical school and a $130M for a Heart hospital).
Mr. DeVos has not only served on the State Board of Education, but also founded the West Michigan Aviation Academy which is a High School that provides rigorous educational programs with a special focus on aviation. As a qualified jet aircraft and helicopter pilot, this is an academy that is especially close to his heart.
By offering scholarships for underprivileged children in Michigan, Dick DeVos is giving children who normally wouldn’t have these opportunities the chance to reach for the stars and make their dreams a reality. Dick and his wife Betsy are firm believers that children are our future, and the more opportunities we can give them to obtain quality educations, the brighter all of our futures have the potential to be.
Education isn’t the only area in which Mr. and Mrs. DeVos have dedicated themselves. They are also firmly rooted in their community and believe that to make West Michigan a desirable place to live, they need to support efforts that lead to transformation within the community, including health care improvements and essential needs.
Additionally Dick and Betsy DeVos support the Arts. They believe in igniting artistic innovations and the spirit of the arts to enhance their community and make Michigan an amazing place to live and grow.
Mr. and Mrs. DeVos keep themselves busy with their many efforts, including a Michigan-based management firm with diversified projects in technology, clean-tech, and non-profit solutions. Selfless philanthropy at its best, shining through.