The DeVos family of Western Michigan, has dedicated much of their time and money to charities, primarily in Grand Rapids and throughout Western Michigan. The family has not only donated nearly $1.2 billion to various organizations throughout the years, but also works with the organizations to counsel the management on how to further increase their donations from other organizations and individuals. Originally, the family kept their philanthropy records private, but released details of their charity in order to inspire others to do the same. Their overall goal is improve the community for this and future generations. Family patriarch, Rich DeVos, now 89, has remained loyal to the community where he and best friend, Jay Van Andel, founded Amway. The DeVos family now has five individual organizations where they contribute to individual and joint organizations. These include; the Richard an Helen DeVos Foundation, the Dick and Betsy DeVos Foundation, the Daniel an Pamella DeVos Foundation, the (Cheri DeVos) CDV5 Foundation, and the Douglas and Maria DeVos Foundation.
Dick DeVos and wife, Betsy, are actively involved in various organizations to improve the community. Through the Dick and Betsy DeVos Foundation, they donate thousands to organizations throughout Western Michigan.
Dick is co-chair of Grand Action, which has lead in the revitalization of downtown Grand Rapids. In 1991, he organized 50 community and civic leaders to work together to improve downtown with a focus on sustainability. His efforts have resulted in a thriving downtown area which includes; a convention center, sports arena, several art and culture landmarks, and two satellite campuses of Grand Valley State University.
A unique venture of the organization comes from the marriage of Dick’s passion for aviation and his and Betsy’s interest in improving education. Betsy came up with the idea of to create the first public charter aviation school in the United States. In 2010, the Western Michigan Aviation Academy opened its door an accepted students tuition-free.
Dick DeVos continues to work full-time through his and Betsy’s Foundation. He also has written the book, “Believe” and can be followed on Facebook and Twitter!