I saw the latest campaign ad for Dick Jr.'s run for governor. It opens with photographs of a dilapidated downtown Grand Rapids circa 1970, which Dick DeVos credits himself for rescuing from its pit of despair. Other than Dick Jr. being barely out of short pants when he allegedly began his program to renovate downtown, there's the inconvenient fact that the Amway co-founders, his father Rich DeVos and the late Jay Van Andel, took the credit for everything. Well, maybe Dick Jr. was working behind the scenes.
Even so, I think there were other factors involved in bringing downtown out its funk of the '70s. For example, the strong economy of the '80s and '90s that brought renewal to city centers across the country. But, I'll let Dick Jr. have credit for all the glory of a reinvigorated downtown Grand Rapids, if he makes public all of the benefits he, his family, and the Van Andels have reaped from their involvement in downtown development projects.