Apparently, Dick DeVos is a connoisseur of fine spirits and has plans for more than just a tasting of Applejack at Coppercraft Distillery in Holland, Michigan. Acquiring good taste, or, at least, knowing what is worth savoring, is just part of this man’s business sense. Although this deal isn’t yet complete, as it takes up to six months to transfer the liquor license, I believe it is well under way. Walter Catton III, the owner of the distillery, has been looking for an investor to help him expand his liquor business and the spirit he needs is being consumed by Windquest Group’s philanthropist DeVos.
As Grand Valley State University can attest, the DeVos family generosity is well known and appreciated. Dick’s foundation has given close to a billion dollars to education, health services, the arts, and religious groups while sharing much of the proceeds near his region based in Grand Rapids, Michigan. In the late 80’s, Dick and Betsy DeVos created the DBDVF Family Foundation that gives its time and considerable wealth to serve the people of Western Michigan.
Dick and his wife enjoy giving to many causes, but education may be chief among them. He even founded the first public charter aviation high school in West Michigan because of both his dedication to the pursuit of education and his passion for flight.
Dick has enjoyed living and working near Grand Rapids and has seen his father’s instilled work ethic manifest in all of his business ventures.
Dick began working in his father Richard DeVos’s company, Amway Corporation (http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2010/09/amway_heir_dick_and_betsy_devo.html), back in the early 70’s, and after fifteen years started a new venture, the Windquest Group. He went on to manage the Orlando Magic franchise and later returned to Amway and helped restructure it into the umbrella group of Alticor Corporation, which now has operations around the world. If I had a bucket list like Dick , I’d want to follow it until I had checked every box. He has been a busy man and can now turn his activities to the pursuit of even finer endeavors.
And, with all this good will in place and the fortitude to follow a new quest, there is plenty of good cheer to celebrate in Holland, not that Coppercraft and its employees have any problems with this latest ambition. My hat’s off to Mr. DeVos and this new pursuit of excellence in the distillation industry. If the businesses he has managed have any portent of things to come, I believe that we will hear more from DeVos and company. With industries thriving and the economy booming, what is there left to do but to enjoy the fruits, if not the spirits, of his labor?