Dick and Betsy DeVos is one couple that stirs a lot of speculation in various circles. In most cases, the debate is normally propelled by their huge donations towards political causes in the United States. Furthermore, the couple holds a reputation for their altruism, which is mirrored by their generous giving totaling to a whopping $139 million.
The unique bit about their donations is that they give more money to philanthropic causes than political ones. This conclusion came out clearly during Betsy’s vetting process. Betsy revealed that in 2015 their foundation gave out $11.6 million in terms of philanthropic donations. This figure was twice the amount the couple had given out as campaign donations over the past five years, $5.3 million.
The DeVos couple form a large part of the family that has played a considerable role in the politics of the Republican Party. Dick DeVos and his four children have also contributed largely to charitable efforts. In fact , their contributions of about $104 million in 2015, pushed the DeVos family to the 24th position among Forbes America’s Top Givers. Additionally, Forbes used information from the DeVos family to estimate their lifetime donations to about $1.33 billion, which is a quarter of the family’s $5.2 billion fortune.
The couple’s giving also depicts their value for education. In fact, Dick and Betsy DeVos allocated about $3 million to educational efforts. This figure was 26% of their entire charitable contributions in 2015. They also gave out $357,000 to groups that back education reforms. Some of the schools that benefited from the couples charitable donations in 2015 include Rehoboth Christian School, Ferris State University in Big Rapids among others.
A Closer Focus on Dick DeVos
Dick DeVos is one of the most renowned business and entrepreneurial personalities in Michigan. He is the son of the late Richard DeVos, the co-founder of Amway Corporation. Dick joined his father’s company, Amway, in 1974 where he worked in different departments. Dick became the vice president of Amway Corporation in 1984. However, he left the company to establish Windquest Group, a company involved in the marketing and manufacturing of closet and storage organizers. Later on, his father was appointed him to manage the family-acquired NBA Orlando Magic Basketball franchise. After sometime, Dick DeVos returned to Amway to serve as its president before retiring to concentrate on Windquest Group.
Dick DeVos is a family man, who is married to the current secretary of education, Betsy DeVos. She is the daughter of Edgar Prince, president and founder of the Prince Corporation. Her brother, Erik Prince, is the owner and president of Blackwater private security company. As the president of the Dick and Betsy DeVos Foundation, Dick DeVos has spearheaded numerous philanthropic initiatives, especially in Michigan. Donations from the organization target artistic, civic, free-market economic, educational, religious and community organizations.