Dick Devos – article recap

Dick DeVos is changing the face of Grand Rapids, Michigan. The billionaire CEO and entrepreneur has spend a great deal of his vast fortune putting his money where his mouth is.


In 1991, after a group came forward to push for a downtown sporting arena, DeVos used his power and influence to thwart those efforts. His reasoning — to keep downtown Grand Rapids from deteriorating like Downtown Detroit did after the Pontiac Silverdome and the Palace were vacated.


After the sporting arena was nixed, several business leaders came forward with the idea to build other skyline improving properties like the DeVos Place Convention Center, DeVos Performance Hall and Michigan State’s medical school.


As an heir of great wealth, DeVos has used some of his massive wealth to change policy and influence state laws regarding labor and education.


While his wife Betsy DeVos, newly appointed Sec. of Education, has pushed for the expansion of charter schools he continued to work on changing Detroit to a right-to-work state. Very ironic, since the city is well-known for being the birthplace of unionization.


DeVos’ foray into education is something that has brought a lot of good to the state. For years, the DeVos family has been on the forefront of school choice. It is their philosophy that all children are entitled to an excellent education regardless of socioeconomic background.


The Dick and Betsy DeVos Foundation has given nearly $140 million to a number of initiatives including the arts, education, human services and churches. He also spearheaded the construction of a children’s hospital named in honor of his mother Helen DeVos.


The children’s hospital — Spectrum Health System — is a god send to locals who have sick children. It saves them from having to make the long drive to Ann Arbor and Chicago to receive care.


While DeVos and his wife have tried hard at getting Michiganders on board with educational reforms, not all have agreed.


Their 2000 attempt for a constitutional amendment to create a school voucher program fell flat. But even though they lost in their state, they were able to get programs in others. DeVos and his wife pushed the voucher strategy and now 24 states have it in some form.


DeVos also unsuccessfully ran to unseat Gov. Jennifer Granholm in 2006.


He says he may run for office again one day. But right now, he’s concentrating on other ways to better his stat. Learn more: http://www.freep.com/story/opinion/contributors/2016/12/01/michigan-parole-reform/94075318/


Adam Milstein was born in Haifa, Israel in 1952 and grew up there and later served in the Israel Defense Forces, serving in the Yom Kipper War in 1973. He attended Technion, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in business and economics. Adam Milstein married Gila in 1974, then in 1981 moved to the United States, attended the University of Southern California and received a Master of Business Administration degree.


Adam Milstein began his career as a sales agent in the commercial real estate business. He is currently employed at Hager Pacific Properties, an investment company worth over $2 billion. Adam is managing partner in the San Fernando Valley office and oversees the financing and accounting divisions. The company owns and manages over one-hundred industrial and commercial properties all over the United States, as well as 2,300 apartment units.


Adam Milstein is not only a successful businessman, but is a man who is “passionate about working to strengthen the Jewish people”, which he stated in an interview. He has founded or co-founded many pro-Israel organizations, including the following:

  1. Adam and Gila Milstein Family Foundation – Provides money and services to many

organizations and individuals to help strengthen the relationship between Israel and the United States,the Jewish people and the State of Israel.

  1. Israeli-American Council – Serves 250,000 Israeli-Americans to help strengthen the

American Jewish community and is the fastest growing Jewish organization in the world.

  1. SifriyatPijamaB’America – Provides free monthly Hebrew books to seventy Israeli- Jewish American families.

He also serves on the Boards of many more organizations that help Israel and U.S. relations, has taken part in Pro-Israel activist activities, has written editorials regarding movements that could be a threat to Israel and western nations and is known as one of the “top twenty-five Twitter activists”.

Along with all of his accomplishments, a top Jewish newspaper chose Adam Milstein as one of the “Top 100 People Positively Influencing Jewish Life” and wrote that “he is making an impact on the world that will last for many generations to come”.