By Olan Beam, Cover Photography By John Walsh

Kevin-Harvick-BB&T-Perspectives_a

Keelan, Kevin and DeLana on race day.

Kevin and DeLana Harvick immediately strike you as people you’d like to have as friends – engaging, friendly and unpretentious. What’s more striking is their demeanor stays the same even when they are dealing with large crowds vying for their attention, photographers jockeying for a shot of them or dignitaries eager for a handshake or picture with them.

When you talk to the Harvicks, you get the impression they feel fortunate to have accomplished all they have so far. And to them, being fortunate means not taking success for granted but sharing that success with friends, fans and communities.

Importance of Values

Both Kevin and DeLana grew up in families with modest resources that emphasized strong values and work ethics.

“Neither of our families had a lot of extras growing up, but we both had good childhoods, parents who would do anything for us and the benefit of learning important values like integrity, teamwork and responsibility,” DeLana said.

Kevin credits the time his family spent watching and playing sports with teaching him about drive and teamwork. While it just felt like fun, Kevin learned valuable life lessons from the time he spent with his family at the racetrack and in go-karts, as well from time he spent with a few high school mentors.

“Four years on my high school wrestling team shaped me tremendously,” he said. “My coaches always supported me. They taught me to push the boundaries of what I could accomplish and made me realize the importance of having people you can rely on in your corner.”

Shared Accomplishments

Those life lessons have certainly paid off for Kevin and DeLana. Kevin’s racing accomplishments are exceptional, with more than 30 wins and almost 260 top 10 finishes in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races alone. He started his NASCAR Sprint Cup career in 2001 and was named the Series Rookie of the Year that same year. In 2014, he won the Sprint Cup Series Championship.

Kevin-Harvick-BB&T-Perspectives-combo

Left to right: The Harvicks celebrating a win; Kevin with the 2014 Sprint Cup trophy.

“I’m proud of what I’ve achieved, but I couldn’t have done it without help,” Kevin said. “Since early in my career, DeLana and I have made decisions together, and Fred Lekse has been an integral part of running our companies and foundation. DeLana and I have a core group of people we trust to help us, and I credit that group with what we’ve been able to accomplish.”

The Harvicks keep that core group small so they can stay as involved as possible. “I’m proud of the great talent we have, and I trust the people we work with – but we like being involved,” Kevin said. “The companies and foundation have the Harvick name on them, so who would be more motivated to make them work than us? You stay involved in decisions that affect your life.”

Making an Impact

Kevin-Harvick-Foundation-LogoWhile the Harvicks are involved, they also believe they can have greater impact and productivity by working with partners that have diverse capabilities and reach. The Kevin Harvick Foundation recently began working with the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation to build sports fields for underprivileged youth. They cut the ribbon on their first collaboration, a sports field for the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club in Greensboro, N.C., in November 2015.

“Kevin and I realized a few years ago that the Kevin Harvick Foundation could have much greater impact if we worked with a complementary partner,” DeLana explained. “The Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation shared our objectives of helping underprivileged youth – and together, we can increase the number and size of projects.”

Focus on Youth

Kevin and DeLana started the Kevin Harvick Foundation in 2010 after deciding they wanted to help more people than they could by donating to various charities and causes as they had in the past. And, they decided to focus their efforts on youth to maximize their impact.

“As we thought about our childhoods and how the lessons and values we learned affected the rest of our lives, we decided the Kevin Harvick Foundation should focus on young people,” Kevin said. “We believe using sports programs improves the chance of connecting with youth. Teamwork, fairness, determination, effort and competition are so integral to sports that you learn them by just enjoying the game.”

Another objective of their philanthropy plan is to give back to their communities. Kevin grew up in Bakersfield, C.A., and DeLana grew up in Greensboro, N.C., so it is not surprising that the Kevin Harvick Foundation built its first youth sports fi eld in Greensboro. Guess where the next one will go?

Kevin-Harvick-Foundation-Greensboro-NC-BB&T-Perspectives

Left to right: Cal Ripken, Jr., Kevin and DeLana; Opening day at the Kevin Harvick Foundation Park in Greensboro, N.C.

“I grew up in Bakersfield and the people in that town supported me from day one,” Kevin said. “They are part of the reason I’m in a position to help others today. Being able to give back to the communities we grew up in, especially to the kids, is extremely meaningful to us.”

While the Kevin Harvick Foundation is currently focused on Kevin and DeLana’s hometowns, they realize many more communities support them, and they anticipate expanding the foundation’s support into additional areas.

“Being in racing for as long as we have, our view of community has expanded far past our hometowns,” DeLana said. “We have developed relationships and received such strong support at every racing venue. The exposure has given us a broader view about where there are needs. We’ve also seen local organizations that do great work, but don’t have scale and resources. The Kevin Harvick Foundation will be looking in those directions as we plan where we go in the future.”

Planning For The Future

Planning has been critical to Kevin and DeLana’s philanthropic success and how they manage and balance other aspects of their lives. “We are in the last year of a five-year plan,” Kevin said.

“We have been very successful in accomplishing our professional, financial and philanthropic goals. We want to make an impact with our lives and the best way to do that is to be as productive as possible.”

Speaking of making an impact, in 2012 Kevin and DeLana welcomed their son, Keelan, to the family, creating an even greater need for planning and prioritization.

“One of our most important goals is being the best parents we can be,” Kevin said. “Having Keelan has given us a new perspective and, we believe, an even better balance to our lives. Planning helps us stay productive and keeps us on target with what’s most important.”

Kevin and DeLana’s BB&T Wealth advisor is Brent J. Martin.

By Olan Beam, Cover Photography By John Walsh

Kevin and DeLana Harvick immediately strike you as people you’d like to have as friends – engaging, friendly and unpretentious. What’s more striking is their demeanor stays the same even when they are dealing with large crowds vying for their attention, photographers jockeying for a shot of them or dignitaries eager for a handshake or picture with them.

Kevin-Harvick-BB&T-Perspectives_a

Keelan, Kevin and DeLana on race day.

When you talk to the Harvicks, you get the impression they feel fortunate to have accomplished all they have so far. And to them, being fortunate means not taking success for granted but sharing that success with friends, fans and communities.

Importance of Values

Both Kevin and DeLana grew up in families with modest resources that emphasized strong values and work ethics.

“Neither of our families had a lot of extras growing up, but we both had good childhoods, parents who would do anything for us and the benefit of learning important values like integrity, teamwork and responsibility,” DeLana said.

Kevin credits the time his family spent watching and playing sports with teaching him about drive and teamwork. While it just felt like fun, Kevin learned valuable life lessons from the time he spent with his family at the racetrack and in go-karts, as well from time he spent with a few high school mentors.

“Four years on my high school wrestling team shaped me tremendously,” he said. “My coaches always supported me. They taught me to push the boundaries of what I could accomplish and made me realize the importance of having people you can rely on in your corner.”

Shared Accomplishments

Those life lessons have certainly paid off for Kevin and DeLana. Kevin’s racing accomplishments are exceptional, with more than 30 wins and almost 260 top 10 finishes in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races alone. He started his NASCAR Sprint Cup career in 2001 and was named the Series Rookie of the Year that same year. In 2014, he won the Sprint Cup Series Championship.

Kevin-Harvick-BB&T-Perspectives-combo

Left to right: The Harvicks celebrating a win; Kevin with the 2014 Sprint Cup trophy.

“I’m proud of what I’ve achieved, but I couldn’t have done it without help,” Kevin said. “Since early in my career, DeLana and I have made decisions together, and Fred Lekse has been an integral part of running our companies and foundation. DeLana and I have a core group of people we trust to help us, and I credit that group with what we’ve been able to accomplish.”

The Harvicks keep that core group small so they can stay as involved as possible. “I’m proud of the great talent we have, and I trust the people we work with – but we like being involved,” Kevin said. “The companies and foundation have the Harvick name on them, so who would be more motivated to make them work than us? You stay involved in decisions that affect your life.”

Making an Impact

 

Kevin-Harvick-Foundation-LogoWhile the Harvicks are involved, they also believe they can have greater impact and productivity by working with partners that have diverse capabilities and reach. The Kevin Harvick Foundation recently began working with the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation to build sports fields for underprivileged youth. They cut the ribbon on their first collaboration, a sports field for the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club in Greensboro, N.C., in November 2015.

“Kevin and I realized a few years ago that the Kevin Harvick Foundation could have much greater impact if we worked with a complementary partner,” DeLana explained. “The Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation shared our objectives of helping underprivileged youth – and together, we can increase the number and size of projects.”

Focus on Youth

Kevin and DeLana started the Kevin Harvick Foundation in 2010 after deciding they wanted to help more people than they could by donating to various charities and causes as they had in the past. And, they decided to focus their efforts on youth to maximize their impact.

“As we thought about our childhoods and how the lessons and values we learned affected the rest of our lives, we decided the Kevin Harvick Foundation should focus on young people,” Kevin said. “We believe using sports programs improves the chance of connecting with youth. Teamwork, fairness, determination, effort and competition are so integral to sports that you learn them by just enjoying the game.”

Another objective of their philanthropy plan is to give back to their communities. Kevin grew up in Bakersfield, C.A., and DeLana grew up in Greensboro, N.C., so it is not surprising that the Kevin Harvick Foundation built its first youth sports fi eld in Greensboro. Guess where the next one will go?

Kevin-Harvick-Foundation-Greensboro-NC-BB&T-Perspectives

Left to right: Cal Ripken, Jr., Kevin and DeLana; Opening day at the Kevin Harvick Foundation Park in Greensboro, N.C.

“I grew up in Bakersfield and the people in that town supported me from day one,” Kevin said. “They are part of the reason I’m in a position to help others today. Being able to give back to the communities we grew up in, especially to the kids, is extremely meaningful to us.”

While the Kevin Harvick Foundation is currently focused on Kevin and DeLana’s hometowns, they realize many more communities support them, and they anticipate expanding the foundation’s support into additional areas.

“Being in racing for as long as we have, our view of community has expanded far past our hometowns,” DeLana said. “We have developed relationships and received such strong support at every racing venue. The exposure has given us a broader view about where there are needs. We’ve also seen local organizations that do great work, but don’t have scale and resources. The Kevin Harvick Foundation will be looking in those directions as we plan where we go in the future.”

Planning For The Future

Planning has been critical to Kevin and DeLana’s philanthropic success and how they manage and balance other aspects of their lives. “We are in the last year of a five-year plan,” Kevin said.

“We have been very successful in accomplishing our professional, financial and philanthropic goals. We want to make an impact with our lives and the best way to do that is to be as productive as possible.”

Speaking of making an impact, in 2012 Kevin and DeLana welcomed their son, Keelan, to the family, creating an even greater need for planning and prioritization.

“One of our most important goals is being the best parents we can be,” Kevin said. “Having Keelan has given us a new perspective and, we believe, an even better balance to our lives. Planning helps us stay productive and keeps us on target with what’s most important.”

Kevin and DeLana’s BB&T Wealth advisor is Brent J. Martin.