Dick DeVos is a former Amway president who has won several awards for his investment prowess. Well-known institutions of higher learning have honored him due to his commitment to improving the quality of education through charitable giving. The current position of Amway Corporation confirms that DeVos is a marketing genius and wise investor. He has been instrumental in establishing a culture of philanthropy and stewardship that has seen him receive honorary doctorates from Central Michigan University, Northwood University, and Groove City College.
Early life and academics
Born and brought up in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the young DeVos was involved in handling simple tasks in his family business. DeVos and Doug (his brother) showed visitors around during Amway’s annual conventions. Their roles changed as they matured. For instance, as teenagers, they were presenting reports in front of groups as well as giving product demonstrations. DeVos graduated from Forest Hills and proceeded with his higher education at the Northwood University. He earned a business administration degree.
DeVos joined Amway Corporation in 1974 and held positions in numerous divisions such as manufacturing, finance, sales, research and development. He became the Vice President of Amway in 1984.He was responsible for the firm’s day-to-day operations, and investment plans in 18 countries. He was able to guide the company to opening several new markets and tripling of global sales to surpass national sales for the first time in Amway’s history.
His family acquired Orlando Magic in 1991 and hired DeVos as the President. He held the role for three years before rejoining Amway as the President. Under his innovative leadership skills, the firm increased its operations and relevancy to more than 50 nations and regions on six continents. One of his major reforms during his tenure at Amway is the corporate restructuring, which led to the creation of Alticor, a new umbrella company. Alticor registered sales of $4.5 billion in 2002, the same year that DeVos retired to focus on his private businesses and politics.
Philanthropic Ventures and board membership
Dick DeVos engages in a broad range of community projects. He founded the Education Freedom Fund that offered over 4,000 learning opportunities to Michigan-based needy kids. Additionally, DeVos has served on several other boards such as Orlando Magic’ Governing Board, Willow Creek Association, West Michigan Aviation Academy, and so forth.