The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts has plans for an expansion in the upcoming years. This expansion would include a pavilion right on the water, a pedestrian bridge linking the pavilion to the new Kennedy Center, the expansion would also include an addition of educational spaces, rehearsal spaces, offices, and dining space. The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts had set a fundraising goal, and with the generosity of the community, this goal has been blown out of the water. Instead of ending the fundraising campaign, it has upped its target by another fifty million. According to a Kennedy Center press release, the campaign has reached $135.9 million towards their expansion. The high donators included: David Rubenstein, The Boeing Co, Jacqueline Mars, Stephen and Christine Schwarzman, David C. Bohnett Foundation, and Adrienne Arsht, the Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation. The generosity of donations has given The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts the chance to truly be something spectacular!
One of the high donators, Dick DeVos is well known for his generosity and charity work. DeVos is an entrepreneur-businessman from Michigan, where he raised by a father who had is hand deeply in the business world already, giving DeVos a clear direction as to his future. Starting in 1974, when he began working with the Amway Corporation. He became vice president in 1984 and according to Wikipedia, “when Dick DeVos became vice president of Amway’s international operation in 1986, sales outside of the U.S. accounted for about 5 percent of overall sales. When he left the position six years later, they had grown to 50 percent of annual sales.” Then in 1991, DeVos become president and CEO of the Orlando Magic basketball team. He used his business expertise to manage the team far beyond expectations. After owning the Orlando Magic basketball team for a little over two years, he left to rejoin the Amway business again. He rejoined the Amway team as President, succeeding his father. According to Wikipedia, “DeVos retired as president of Alticor in August 2002.”
Not only was Devos an amazing businessman, he also believed in charity and spends a lot of his time and energy getting involved in charitable organizations. With his wife beside him, he has developed The Dick & Betsy DeVos Family Foundation, which serves as an aid for local and global communities growth and viability. The Dick & Betsy DeVos Family Foundation has developed Art Prize, which is a cultural event that takes place for nineteen days each Fall. There is art displayed on three square miles of the city and art winners receive some very generous cash prizes. Dick DeVos founded the West Michigan Aviation Academy in 2010 which gives students who are interested in aviation the ability to have a hands-on education. It is a tuition-free charter public high school that focuses mainly on those interested in not only aviation but students interested in technology, engineering, and math are given hands-on opportunities to cultivate their passion. Another charity that is close to The Dick & Betsy DeVos Family Foundation is the Potter’s House, which focuses on Urban students. It is a Christ-centered education for urban students that allows these students to learn discipleship, stewardship, and decision-making in a Christ-centered atmosphere.