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Foundation Watch: Cheri DeVos and the CDV5 Foundation

August 30, 2019

The Cheri DeVos Foundation, also known as the CVD5 Foundation, is probably the least known of the DeVos family foundations. This is not surprising, as Cheri DeVos is not in the news like her other siblings, Dick, Doug and Dan. However, the lack of media attention, doesn’t mean that Cheri DeVos doesn’t have the same ideological commitments as the rest of the family.

Besides being born into the DeVos family wealth, Cheri DeVos owns numerous brands throughout the area. She owns CDV5 Property Management, that new restaurant on the corner of Wealthy & Fuller – Hancock, MSA Fieldhouse, MSA Sport Spot, MSA Woodland, Ottawa Beach General Store and Ada Village General Store. For more details on the various brands owned by Cheri DeVos, click here.

On the CDV5 Foundation website, it says, “We partner with select causes and organizations that are closely aligned with our passions.” So lets see what the foundation’s passions are that they contribute large sums of money to and what that means. 

We looked at the three most recent years (2015 – 2017) of 990 documents for the CDV Foundation, as provided by the site Guidestar. According to Guidestar, this foundation has $61.5 million in assets. Some of the larger contributions from the CDV5 Foundation went to similar areas or entities as the other DeVos foundation supported.

(Public Education)

  • Wake Forest $7,000,000
  • Michigan State University $1,550,000
  • Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation $770,000

(Private Education)

  • Hope College $4,650,000
  • Grand Rapids Christian School Association $2,875,000
  • Ada Christian School Society $1,260,000
  • Rehoboth Christian School Association $650,000
  • Potters House $650,000


  • ICCF $1,515,000 (all in 2017)
  • Grand Rapids Whitewater Inc. $1,275,000
  • Kids Food Basket $1,150,000
  • Bethany Christian Services $685,000
  • Mackinac Center for Public Policy $300,000
  • AmplifyGR $160,417

Most of these contributions from the CDV5 Foundation are consistent with contributions from the Dick & Betsy DeVos Foundation, the Doug & Maria DeVos Foundation and the Dan & Pamela DeVos Foundation.

Like the other DeVos foundations, the CDV5 Foundation made significant contributions to private Christian schools, which certainly fits within the family’s ideological framework.   What may not seem so predictable is the funding that the CDV5 Foundation has provides in recent years to the Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation ($770,000), which is a funding arm of the Grand Rapids Public Schools.

Providing funding to the Grand Rapids Public Schools may seem to fall outside of the ideological commitments of the DeVos family, but that is because much of the public has been unaware of the DeVos families efforts to transform the GRPS. As we noted in our recent post on the Doug & Maria DeVos Foundation, that foundation contributed $1,122,800 to the Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation, along with the fact that Maria DeVos sits on the board of that foundation. 

Another significant common recipient of DeVos foundation money has been the Inner City Christian Federation (ICCF). Above we noted that the CDV5 Foundation contributed $1,515,000 to ICCF in 2017, which is the same year that other DeVos foundations contributed over $1 million each, along with other families in the Grand Rapids Power Structure. These contributions to ICCF coincided with the their announced partnership with AmplifyGR.

Other notable contributions from the CDV5 Foundation, as listed above, shows that Cheri DeVos also has support right wing think tanks like the Mackinac Center and has contributed to charity groups like Kids Food Basket, which do not have a commitment to ending the causes of hunger or poverty. Like the other DeVos family foundations, the CDV5 Foundation contributes to numerous charity-based entities because it is great PR for the family and because they know that these charity-based groups will not challenge or question the role that the DeVos families plays in creating poverty and increasing the wealth gap in Michigan.

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