In Michigan, social clout doesn’t come from material possessions, it comes from how much you donate, and the DeVos family has plenty of social clout along with a newly released report that shows their lifetime donations to be almost $1.2 billion. Their newly released figures put them on Forbes Top 50 givers list with a whopping $94 million for 2014 alone. The magazine tried to get the information for years, and the information was finally released by the family in the hopes that it will encourage others to be generous.
The DeVos family is very upfront in stating that the driving factor that motivates them to donate and to be so generous is their faith. It is a central factor in who they are and everything they do. They also have outlined their model for what their charitable goals are, cultivating leadership, speeding up the process of change, and garnering support in what they consider to be five key areas. The five areas are education, community, arts, justice, and leadership.
Dick DeVos, the oldest of the Amway founders children, is among the most prominent of the family. He has been at the forefront of such endeavors as the Windquest Group, he was the CEO of the NBA’s Orlando Magic and he spent time as the president of Amway as well. His career has been an impressive measure of success by any standards, which has afforded him his generosity. To learn more about Dick’s work experience, check out his LinkedIn.
They strongly believe that by being a driving force behind positive change in education as well as making access to higher education easier, uplifting the community and making it a more positive place, integrating arts programs to expand education, striving to protect and uphold human rights, and developing leaders within the community will all result in overall positive changes not only to Michigan but to the country as a whole.
Each year, the family receives around 500 requests for their charitably foundation to support. The foundation has created allegiances with some big partners in their community to help further the outreach, including ArtPrize, West Michigan Aviation Academy, and The Potter’s House. Through their partners they are able to work throughout the community to bring forth the positive change they are hoping to spread around the country. Information about the family’s charitable foundation can be found at DBDV Family Foundation