Today, Bruce runs the ranch, managing all household duties, the childrenâ€™s care, and schedules. He also oversees construction of their home and barn, which houses two horses: a Tennessee walker and a quarter horse. â€śA man does whatever is necessary for his family,â€ť he says.
Bruce plays a supporting role in his wifeâ€™s career. He attends company events and offers professional help. For example, he recently attended a dinner in which Matthews was wooing a marketing candidate to Amway. Bruce provided the candidate and his wife with information on Matthewsâ€™ management style, the companyâ€™s family-oriented corporate culture, the ownersâ€™ dispositions, and family life in Grand Rapids. A few weeks later the candidate accepted the position, saying he was won over by the companyâ€™s approach.
Matthews never imagined when she received the headhunterâ€™s call two years ago that she and her family would be presented with so many opportunities. At Amway, sheâ€™s still focused on building an effective team and a winning strategy to help the company reach its goalâ€”dubbed â€ś12×12â€ťâ€”$12 billion by 2012. She says, â€śThe best of all worlds is when the best of who you are can come out in what you do.â€ť
â€”Additional reporting by Benice Atufunwa
This story originally appeared in the September 2009 issue of Black Enterprise magazine.