The DeVos family has received a lot of attention throughout the years, much more so recently because of Betsy DeVos’ nomination for Secretary of Education. Dick and his wife Betsy have been known for their political contributions, but Dick recently stepped out of the shadows to show the couple isn’t just about politics. Dick was happy to open up the door and allow everyone to see the couple’s history of philanthropy and the almost $139 million in charitable contributions they have made in their lifetimes. Their political givings have been criticized since his wife’s nomination, but in just 2015 alone the couple gave out more than $11 million through the Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation. That number is double the amount given in campaign donations over the past five years combined. All of this information was necessarily given as part of Betsy’s vetting process as a result of the nomination to Secretary of Education.
As part of the DeVos family, Dick is no stranger to being a part of the community. The DeVos family has always been a high-profile family, known for their support of the Republican Party and their donations to charities. The entire DeVos family handed out a cool $104 million in just one year, earning them a spot on Forbes’ list of the country’s top givers. Forbes used data to determine that the entire DeVos family’s lifetime giving could be estimated at $1.33 billion, almost a quarter of their $5.2 billion fortune. Even Dick’s wife Betsy comes from a well-known charitable family, the Princes.
Aside from politics, Dick and his wife Betsy choose education as their priority. The couple gave over $3 million in donations to various educational causes in 2015 alone. That number accounts for around 26 percent of their donations for the entire year, giving 3 percent to various groups that support education reform. Dick and Betsy have long-since been advocates for charter schools, school vouchers, and school choice. They believe that not every American has an opportunity to achieve the American dream and they strive to give these Americans the education necessary to do so.
Dick is the heir to the DeVos family, his father being the co-founder of the Amway Corporation. He began working for Amway in 1974 and eventually became the company’s Vice President before leaving form the Windquest Group, an investment company. He was selected to manage the family’s franchise, the NBA’s Orlando Magic basketball team. He returned to Amway was its Presdient in 1993, where he oversaw a corporate restructuring, created the new mother company Alticor Corporation. After devoting a few years to the Windquest Group, Dick went back to Alticor to become its President. Dick even ran for Governor of Michigan in 2006.