The Legacy Of Dick DeVos In Grands Rapids And The State Of Michigan
Dick DeVos is most famous as a businessman. The billionaire businessman is also heavily involved in politics along with his wife, Betsy. Dick DeVos is especially active in the Grand Rapids and Michigan political scene. Here are some of his contributions to these areas.
Mr. DeVos helped save downtown Grand Rapids from desolation when he helped lead a charge to defeat suburban sprawl around downtown Grand Rapids. The planned sprawl would move much activity away from downtown Grand Rapids and into the suburbs. Instead, Dick and many of his friends helped revitalize the city.
Richard “Dick” DeVos provided millions of dollars to help construct a performing arts venue, convention center, sports arena and a shopping center in the heart of the city. He also provided money to help build the Michigan State University Medical School in Grand Rapids. In addition, Mr. DeVos has helped to establish a family children’s hospital. All of these moves helped save Grand Rapids from suffering the same fate that the city of Detroit suffered only a few years earlier.
Dick Devos’ wife Betsy DeVos is famous for her passion for pursuing educational reform. She now leads the United States Department of Education and is a champion for school choice. Dick DeVos supports his wife Betsy in this regard. She convinced him to open up a charter aviation high school right in Grand Rapids. This school now serves hundreds of students and is located right within the Gerald R. Ford International Airport.
Dick DeVos has helped his wife Betsy DeVos pass school voucher programs throughout the state of Michigan and beyond. Mr. DeVos is also a strong proponent of the right to work laws. These are laws which state that a person has a right to obtain employment without being forced to be a member of a labor union. Before the right to work laws were successfully passed in Michigan, the unions could exclude applicants from jobs. Dick DeVos has helped open up the labor market to more American in Michigan and many other states.
Mr. DeVos is also helping to expand the service offered at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids. For many years, airline companies would bypass the Western Michigan area. Dick DeVos helped convince many airlines to start offering service to the area. This has created jobs and helped lower the price of travel to and from the area.
To learn more, visit http://www.dbdvfoundation.org/.