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Ruth’s Chris Cares Charity Golf Event donation spurs creation of collaborative oasis for students

GRAND RAPIDS, MI - May 1, 2015 – Ruth’s Chris Steak House Grand Rapids, along with Haworth, the Amway Corporation, officials from Grand Rapids Public Schools and Union High School students today cut the ribbon on Union High School’s new Dream Library. The project, an $85,000 renovation of the school’s old library, features flexibility for learning, community meetings, after school programing and a media center to access technology.

The funds for the Dream Library Project were raised through Ruth’s Chris 3rd Annual Ruth’s Chris Cares Charity auction and golf outing at Egypt Valley Country Club last September, along with a generous sponsorship from Amway Corporation and Haworth, to make the library a reality.

“We are delighted that Ruth’s Chris Cares had the opportunity to create a space they need for work, study, collaborative learning and inspiration,” said Chad LeRoux, chief marketing officer of Amway Hotel Corporation. “Ruth Chris’s Cares’ mission is to help fund new and emerging charitable organizations and initiatives, like the Union High School Dream Library Project that will help create opportunities for West Michigan youth.”

The project is critically important to student access to learning opportunities, said GRPS Superintendent Teresa Weatherall Neal.

“It is so important that our students have access to state of the art libraries and media centers like this. The kids absolutely love it and the deserve it,” Superintendent Neal said. “Our friends at Ruth’s Chris set the bar for how we as a district should be developing all our libraries throughout the district so all 17,000 GRPS students have this same opportunity.”

As part of the project, Haworth and the design team from Interphase collaborated with GRPS, Union High School students and teachers, to help with the design, layout and furniture, said Tom Manikowski, senior business development manager, Haworth.

“We are honored to be a part of the process that made this project a reality,” Manikowski said. “The Dream Library Project transformed the school’s library into a 21st century learning center that will offer the school a flexible environment that will be conducive to a variety of functions, including individual studying, group research and collaboration, and community events.”


About Amway Hotel Corporation: Amway Hotel Corp. owns and operates three hotel properties: the Amway Grand Plaza HotelJW Marriott Grand Rapids and the Courtyard by Marriott in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan.  Amway Hotel Corp. is a division of Amway Corporate Enterprises, a subsidiary of Amway Inc.


About Ruth’s Chris Steak House:  Ruth’s Chris Steak House, owned and operated by Ruth’s Hospitality Group, Inc., is the largest family of upscale steak houses in the world with more than 130 restaurant locations around the globe.  Founded in New Orleans by Ruth Fertel in 1965, Ruth’s Chris specializes in USDA prime grade steaks, served in their signature “sizzling” style.


About Amway: Amway is a leading direct selling company operating in more than 100 countries and territories worldwide. The company reported global sales of $11.8 billion USD in 2013. Founded in 1959 by entrepreneurs Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel, and based in Ada, Michigan, U.S., Amway offers consumer products and business opportunities that are supported by a global agribusiness, manufacturing and logistics supply chain. More than 900 scientists, engineers and technical professionals work in 75 R&D and quality assurance labs worldwide to support product development and create a culture of scientific excellence. Top-selling brands for Amway are NUTRILITE™ vitamin, mineral and dietary supplements, ARTISTRY™ skincare and color cosmetics, and eSpring™ water treatment systems. For company news, visit


Globally, Haworth improves workplaces with award-winning furniture, interior architecture and technology solutions to help customers achieve business goals and transform culture as well as support collaboration and innovation.  Research + design drive a deep understanding of agile workplace needs and are at the center of the company’s strategy.  Haworth is committed to protecting and restoring the environment, creating economic value as well as supporting and strengthening its communities.  Founded in 1948, Haworth remains family-owned and privately-held and serves markets in more than 120 countries through a global network of 650 dealers and 6,000 employees. The company had net sales of US $1.8 billion in 2014.