Dick Devos is a man who has demonstrated that he has talents in many areas. He is a successful businessman, he is a leader in educational policy, he has worked as a politician and he had been instrumental in helping to revitalize his hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Dick Devos was born into the family that owns the Amway Corporation. Mr. Devos also worked in the family business. He worked his way up the ranks to become the CEO of Amway from 1993 to 2002.
Dick Devos has used his influence as a successful businessman to help revitalize and strengthen Grand Rapids. At one time, some community leaders wanted to abandon downtown Grand Rapids and place important development out in the suburbs. Dick Devos was opposed to that idea. He recognized that if a new convention center was placed in the downtown area, it could help kickstart the rebirth of Grand Rapids. That is exactly what happened. Mr. Devos and his wife made significant contributions to bring cultural attractions to downtown, and they helped to build the children’s wing of the local medical center.
Mr. Devos has also worked to revitalize the Gerald Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids. He went and personally discussed the situation at the airport with representatives from AirTran. They agreed to start offering non-stop flights from the airport. When Southwest Airlines purchased AirTran, Southwest expanded service. The airport is now a bustling center of activity.
As an educational pioneer who has been active in the school choice movement, Mr. Devos has founded and contributed to a charter school based around the theme of aviation. This charter school is based at the Gerald Ford International Airport. The charter school has a sterling reputation, and families have a strong desire for their children to be able to attend.
Dick Devos has been active in Michigan politics. He made a run for governor. While he was not victorious, he has seen other political victories in the state. Mr. Devos worked on an effort to pass right-to-work legislation in Michigan. This endeavor proved to be quite successful.
Mr. Devos and his wife continue to help those in the Grand Rapids community. Through their foundation, the couple continue to donate to a variety of religious, educational and community organizations.
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