During the earlier part of the 1990’s, Grand Rapids, Michigan was eyeing a plan to construct a multi-use sports and convention arena near its downtown region. Dick DeVos took notice of the plan and began to put together a lobbying effort to shut it down. During his campaign against the idea, he helped to create Grand Action, which is a group of businesspeople from the community who have since helped to improve the city by supporting the construction of a spread of useful buildings.
Dick DeVos was opposed to the idea of the sports and convention arena because of an event that took place many years before in Detroit. During the 1970s, the city’s sports teams the Pistons and Lions had left the city after it had built the Pontiac Silverdome and Palace of Auburn Hills. He was not going to let the same mistake take place in Grand Rapids, and he eventually did put a stop to the idea.
Dick DeVos has done a whole lot more for the state of Michigan over the course of his career. In 2012, he put together a law that changed Michigan from a state where employees had to be a part of union to work to a right-to-work state where this is not necessary. He has also helped to improve the state by making large donations to its arts and culture sector as well as its educational sector. He helped to create the Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation in order to facilitate his giving, and he has donated more than $189 million during his life to various charitable causes.
In 2006, he joined his wife Betsy DeVos by donating over $12 million to help build a children’s hospital in Grand Rapids. He also helped to create a public charter school in the city where young students are able to pursue a career in the aviation industry. The school is named The West Michigan Aviation Academy, and it has been operating since 2010. Every year, hundreds of students show up to a building in the Gerald R. International Airport where they are able to learn more about aviation. DeVos has continued to help improve the school through donations, and it has been wildly successful because of his support.
Dick DeVos is a businessman who has earned billions of dollars during his lifetime. Instead of only looking out for himself and his family, he has continued to work to help improve the state of Michigan for most of his life. DeVos served as the chief executive officer of Amway in the past and is currently a co-owner of the Orlando Magic NBA basketball team. He studied at Northwood University where he received his bachelor’s degree in business administration.
Another way they helped people recently took place in Columbus. Kisling, Nestico & Redick sponsored a shopping spree for 12 children from low-income households. The shopping spree took place at a Meijer where the kids were able to load up on clothes and gear for summer. This law firm’s Brandy Gobrogge stated that they are doing something for kids every month of 2019 for their initiative KNR Cares About Kids.
Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Central Ohio helped Kisling, Nestico & Redick organize this event. President Abby Fisher of this organization said that it was great to give the kids a chance to be excited about getting things for summer they want and need. A representative for Kisling, Nestico & Redick stated the bill was $3,000.
They are also seeking to make roads safer across Ohio. They recently launched an initiative, Don’t Text and Drive, in which they asked for high schoolers to send them ideas on how to get drivers to stop texting. The best submission cam from Elianna Norin of Hudson. Her reward was a $5000 scholarship she will be using later this year at the Savannah College of Art and Design.
Dick DeVos is an entrepreneur and billionaire who was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and he has always done everything he can for the city that he loves so much. In 1991, while many others supported a move to construct a sports and convention arena near the downtown of Grand Rapids, he opposed it. He had seen the same kind of plan fall apart before when the city of Detroit decided the to build the Pontiac Silverdome and Palace of Auburn Hills. This took place during the 1970s and became a huge financial drag on Detroit when the Detroit Lions and Pistons left the city. This is why DeVos began a lobbying effort against the building of a similar type of arena in Grand Rapids.
During this time, Dick DeVos helped to put together the Grand Action group. This group contains important business leaders from the area who care about the city, and these leaders have been the main reason why many buildings in the city have been built. Because of Grand Action, Michigan State University’s medical school was built along with the DeVos Place Convention Center and Van Andel Arena. While the rest of the nation simply knows DeVos as the former CEO of Amway, the state of Michigan knows him for his amazing deeds that have always made the city a better place.
Some years back, Dick DeVos put the time in to convince the CEO of AirTran Airways to run nonstop flights out of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport. Just a few months after he did so, AirTran Airways was purchased by Southwest. DeVos had already been given the job of trying to get Southwest to come to Grand Rapids, and now he could do so with an advantage. Before this, Southwest had turned down opportunities to add flights to the Grand Rapids area. Instead of pleading with Southwest, DeVos told them that he believed they should not just continue to offer flights out of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport, but that they should add more. This ended up working out for DeVos and Southwest because the airport’s growth was twice the average of the rest of the United States.
There are many more stories like this that involve Dick DeVos. The man also ran to serve as the governor of the state of Michigan, but, unfortunately, lost to the incumbent. That never slowed him down, but, instead, motivated him to do more for his home state and city. In recent years, he has started up an aviation charter school with his wife, Betsy DeVos. The school is located on the grounds of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport, and there is a waiting list to get into it because it is that popular.