Dick DeVos is a top businessman and the husband to Betsy DeVos, the U.S. Education Secretary. Dick owns a series of businesses and chairs the boards of various organizations. He is also among the leading philanthropists in the United States, and he has donated millions of dollars to various charities. In his lifetime, he is estimated to have given over $139 million to various charities across the globe.
DeVos donates to various charities through the Family Foundation, an organization he set up with his wife. In 2015, he gave about $11.6 million to help run the affairs of various charities. The news about the DeVos’ philanthropic involvement came about during the vetting of Betsy DeVos for the office of Secretary of Education. The Forbes Magazine lists this family as one of the world’s top philanthropists, with their lifetime giving amounting to $1.33 billion.
Areas of focus
One of the causes that are close to DeVos’ heart is education. In 2015, he ensured that this docket was allocated more three million dollars. This amount is a quarter of the donation given in 2015. Additionally, DeVos issued about $357,000 to all local groups in favor of various educational reforms. According to DeVos, the motivation behind the support of education is the desire to provide children from low-income with better education. The Family Foundation operates under the management of DeVos who ensures that the company meets its philanthropic objectives. One of the organizations that they collaborate with is the Lansing-based Great Lakes Education Foundation. This facility is a situated in Michigan and operates an advocacy center. DeVos has on many occasion made it clear that his charitable donations are not politically motivated.
Arts and Culture
DeVos is a huge supporter of arts and culture, and he allocated about $2.4 million to fund local artists. He is the founder of the DeVos Institute of Arts that is headquartered at the University of Maryland. DeVos started this institute to help Michael Kaiser develop the art business. He began working with Kaiser while he was the chairman of the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts.
Other philanthropic involvement
Aside from education, arts, and culture, DeVos also supports other endeavors, such as leadership and development, civic and community projects, health and health services, and churches. DeVos does not dictate how the money he gives out is spent. DeVos has close ties with the church, and in 2013, he donated over $ 1million to fund a global religious summit. The conference hosted church leaders, government officials, and professionals. DeVos has been able to give back to the community due to the support and encouragement he gets from his wife and children. To the DeVos family, philanthropy is a tradition that is carried from one generation to the other.