It’s coming out. The veil is being lifted on the philanthropic work of Dick Devos, husband of Secretary of Education Betsy Devos. It’s being revealed that they gave one hundred and thirty nine million dollars to charity. So we’re now getting an inside look into what this is all about.
In the year 2015 alone, both Betsy and Dick Devos donated over eleven million dollars to charity, according to a new report on their website that is associated with their family foundation. This is more than double of all the political contributions she gave not over one year, but over half a decade. Dick Devos’ father, Rich Devos, was the founder of Amway and is also known as a great philanthropist. In fact, Rich and his four children, including Dick, all together gave over one hundred and four million dollars to charity in the year 2015 alone, making them gain a high spot on the Forbes list of the Top Givers. All together over their lifetimes, they gave over one and a third billion dollars to charity, which is around a quarter of their estimated fortune.
Why do they give so much charity? It shows their dedication to causes such as education. In fact, in 2015, three million dollars went to charities that help promote education. This is around a quarter of all their charitable donations. Dick Devos said that shows how much he and Betsy care about the education system in our country. There are many issues that need to be fixed, which is why he and she are so dedicated to fixing it, so that all children can get a good education. Instead of a one size fits all public school system, which does not in fact work, because one size does not fit all, they help promote school choice, so that children can attend schools where they are comfortable and where they will truly succeed. It also helps parents send their children to schools where the parents feel the children will flourish best.
Most of the education beneficiaries were in Michigan, the home states of Betsy and Dick DeVos. In 2013, Compass College of Cinematic Arts in Grand Rapids got fifty thousand dollars. The Ferris State University in Big Rapids got one hundred thousand dollars. Northwood University in Midland got two hundred thousand dollars. West Michigan Aviation Academy got three hundred and fifteen thousand dollars. There were many other education institutions that got dozens of thousands of dollars.
There are a lot of philanthropists all over the world that have become known for their generous spirit. I have seen a lot of people that make millions and decide that it is time to play it forward. Dick DeVos is one such person. He has been very fortunate to build his wealth, and now he is giving back to Michigan in a major way.
Dick and Betsy DeVos are fans of supporting education. That is why they started the Dick and Betsy Foundation. I am in total agreement with what they are doing. This is a powerful couple that has managed to change the lives of many students, and their giving has given inspired the children to give as well.
I think that this is a great legacy for Dick DeVos to leave behind. He has done a lot of great things, but I am sure that his biggest accomplishment will be measured by what he has given down through the years. The entire DeVos family has given more than a billion, and they are still giving.
That may be the most interesting thing with Dick DeVos. He has continued to give and he also has continued to pursue new business ventures. Right now he has a hand in the wine business. This is another one of his entrepreneurial ventures. He has worked hard to become successful in the business world and his liquor business is a partnership with WindQuest. Betsy DeVos is also busy with a plan to the tune of $12 million dollars to clean up Lake Macatawa. Both of them have a lot of influence, and their decisions can change a lot of different things in the Michigan area.
I think the most interesting thing is how they have done so much to improve education in Michigan. The Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation has partnered with a lot of organizations in order to bring forth a better community. This foundation has founders that are passionate about building a better educational and justice system. It is not common to find a lot of entrepreneurs like Dick DeVos. I am certain that this spirit of giving is something that will influence others. He has already influenced his children. It is a good chance that the kids that benefit from the work of his foundation will also grow up with a desire to give back to their communities.