Beginning his illustrious career in the family business in 1974, Dick DeVos spent 30 years at Amway, where he held various positions. Dick excelled as Vice President of International Markets, tripling international sales and developing new markets for Amway products. From 1991 to 1993, DeVos took a break from Amway to work in other family business; he served as CEO of the Orlando Magic basketball team. Next came at stint at Alticor, the parent company of Amway. Currently, DeVos serves as President of The Windquest Group, an investment management firm. Dick DeVos is a member of the Board of Directors of Spectrum Health System, the Michigan State Chamber of Commerce and Willow Creek Association. He is Chairman of the Regional Air Alliance of West Michigan and a member of the Board of Trustees for the Thunderbird School of Global Management and the Health Care Foundation as well.
I’ve long admired Devos’ distinguished career at Amway, however, I believe that DeVos’ role as President of The Windquest Group is where DeVos will make a difference for the environment. The Windquest Group provides funding for ElectraTherm, a company that produces generators that turn waste into electricity, and Boxed Water, a firm that sells water in packaging that is kinder to the environment. DeVos and his wife also helped fund a pollution study to determine the sources of E. coli in Lake Macatawa.
Another example of how Dick DeVos effectively combines his interests is his interest in aviation and school choice. Devos believes that children in poorly performing school districts deserve a choice; Dick is also an accomplished helicopter pilot. DeVos and his wife founded a tuition-free charter high school, the West Michigan Aviation Academy, which features a rigorous educational program and aviation training. DeVos also served on the Michigan State Board of Education from 1990 to 1992.
“Rediscovering American Values” by Dick DeVos explains the business tycoon’s philosophy; simple values, such as compassion, honesty and hard work, not only improve a person’s life, they encourage career success. It’s rare to find someone so successful, both in his business and personal life, who practices what he preaches.