The Philanthropy of Betsy DeVos

Betsy DeVos was born as Elisabeth Prince in Holland, Michigan. She married Dick DeVos in 1980 and they have four children together. Over the years I have seen that she has been noted for her activity in business and most especially her philanthropy. Betsy and Dick DeVos founded their company, The Windquest Group, in 1989. The Windquest Group is privately held that provides enterprise and investment management, specializing in hospitality, nonprofits, technology, manufacturing, and clean-tech. Betsy serves as Chairwoman for the company.

Betsy DeVos is noted for the many philanthropic causes that she has backed over the years. Dick and Betsy founded their own charitable foundation in 1989, The Dick & Betsy Family Foundation. In looking at the foundations website I can see that their foundation is motivated by their religious faith and values. The foundation has five main areas of support that they give to; education, arts, community, leadership, and justice. To date they have given over $139 million and in 2015 had been ranked by Forbes as the #24 top givers in the United States. Betsy also gives her time, and was on the Board of Directors for the Kennedy Center of Performing Arts for six years. Additionally Betsy & Dick have donated $22.5 million to the center in order to develop the future leaders who would head the center and other art foundations.

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Another nonprofit that The Dick & Betsy Family Foundation supports is the Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital Pediatric Oncology Program. This program researches the causes and cures of cancer and has researchers throughout the world. The program, based in Michigan, is allied with 26 international university’s and children’s hospitals. The Devos foundation has also given generously to the West Michigan Aviation Academy, which is an academy that prepares high school aged students to work in the airline industry. In addition to featuring a curriculum of subjects such as English, Biology, Math, and other core subjects the academy also teach character issues such as respect and accountability. These are just a few of the charitable works that I have talked about as there are dozens more nonprofits that Betsy and Dick have supported over the years through their generous giving of their money, time, and expertise.

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