I first became aware of Dick DeVos in the 1990s when he became the President of the AmWay group that had been under the leadership of his father, Richard since its inception. The business work completed by Dick DeVos has always been impressive with the first major impact I can recall being made when Dick took control of the foreign markets division of AmWay in the 1980s and turned it into an integral part of the way the company operates. I believe Dick DeVos is still a business leader with few rivals in the world, but I must admit that I have recently been discovering just how unexpectedly large the philanthropic work of Dick DeVos has been as he has set out alongside his wife, Betsy, to give away an amazing figure of more than $100 million to charities across his lifetime.
The DeVos family as a whole are reported to have given away more than $1 billion of their $5.2 billion fortune, according to MLive. In the Grand Rapids, Michigan region and beyond the family have always been known for their impressive political and philanthropic giving; however, I was only able to discover the true extent of the giving of the family for the tax year 2015 when Betsy DeVos was nominated for the position of Secretary of Education and revealed how she donated money each year. I believe Dick and Betsy DeVos have always enjoyed providing funding for the causes close to their hearts and donated an impressive $11 million in 2015 to a variety of causes, which included a more than $3 million in donations to education reform causes. As a former member of the Michigan State Board of Education I was pleased to see Dick DeVos had remained his commitment to the Potter’s House Christian School that is often mentioned as a major reason for the commitment to education reform of the DeVos family.
As I am mostly aware of Dick and Betsy DeVos because of their commitment to education reform and the highest quality of leadership in business, it is always good to learn more about the many different areas of interest for a billionaire such as Dick DeVos; although I was already aware of the political donations of Dick DeVos I was pleased to see that in providing just over $5.3 million for conservative candidates this was less than half of the more than $11 million in charitable donations made by the Northwood University graduate. It is not only the level of funding for good causes that has given me reason to be proud of the good works completed by Dick DeVos, but also the understanding of the need to bring the children of the DeVos family into the philanthropic fold to gain an understanding of the needs of the next generation of people in the world.