Dick DeVos is primarily known throughout the country for his involvement in Republican politics. His wife, Betsy DeVos, is currently serving as the U.S. Secretary of Education and has been involved in Republican politics at the national level for decades. She was the chairperson of the Michigan Republican Party and has organized fundraisers and otherwise formed an integral part of that party for the majority of her adult life.
On top of that association with politics, DeVos himself ran as the 2006 Republican gubernatorial candidate in the state of Michigan. Although his campaign was highly unorthodox, with DeVos self-financing nearly his entire campaign and running on a more centrist platform, he was able to nearly unseat the wildly popular incumbent, Jennifer Granholm. Even as expert political observers predicted that DeVos would lose in a landslide, he was able to come from behind, generating one of the closest races for the governorship of Michigan that the state had ever seen.
But for all of the ways in which DeVos is associated with politics, the truth is that political activities have occupied only the smallest portion of his career. Around his home state and his hometown of Grand Rapids, Michigan, DeVos is far better known for his many entrepreneurial successes, educational reform activities and magnanimous philanthropy.
It is, perhaps, in the area of education where DeVos’ achievements have been greatest and his praises sung the least. Schools like the West Michigan Aviation Academy, to which the autodidactic DeVos personally contributed much of the design, curriculum and equipment, have left lasting marks on the way that public education is carried out in the United States. Another DeVos School, the Hope Academy, has also proven, like West Michigan Aviation Academy, that it is possible to take some of the most disadvantaged kids in the country out of the failing schools that are endemic to their neighborhoods and to place them in environments where they can truly excel. Many of the schools on which DeVos has labored have mostly underprivileged minorities as students. And many of these schools have shown that these kids are able to compete at the highest levels of academia, putting the lie to the idea that the public education system itself is not the root of all the failures seen in educating America’s neglected inner-city children.
Through his educational efforts, DeVos has positively transformed the lives of tens of thousands of urban kids in ways that the public education system never could have.
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Dick DeVos has achieved a lot in his life. He has been involved in many different activities. Most of them are geared towards rebuilding the community of Detroit. He is aware of a lot of the issues that this city is faced with. Therefore, he wants to be a part of the solution so that people living there can have hope. He uses his money to fund many different projects in order to improve the property value of the area. One of the areas that gets a lot of his focus is the education area. He has helped change the way schools are run with the school choice initiative.
Dick DeVos has also put Grand Rapids on the map. One thing about the Grand Rapids is that it had a lot of troubles, and it was going to stop service. However, Dick DeVos has brought forth some funding and insights that have gotten them to continue with their services so that they will be able to work with customers. The majority of Dick DeVos’s acts of charity have gone towards schools. One thing that he is not going to do is just give out resources to people without teaching how they can work for their own resources.
One thing that Dick DeVos wants to teach people is how to experience independence and an abundance mindset. One thing about employees is that they are often at the mercy of their job. They are also one step above losing everything and being like the people that are suffering because they are impoverished and unable to find work. The person who is willing to be creative and find solutions to their issues is going to be the one who gets back on his feet and succeed with whatever objective he has.
One of the best things about being independent like Dick DeVos is that this brings the ability to help people on a large scale. Independent and successful businessmen can also fund facilities that can help with the most important aspects of their communities. One thing that they can do is look for an area of the community that is suffering the worst. Then he can raise funds for this area. Dick DeVos has done something like this with the Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation. He not only funds different organizations, but also collects donations that can be put towards improving the resources of the city.
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Philanthropy Roundtable one of the opportunity to sit down with the new Secretary of Education pick, Betsy DeVos. She has been working in the field of education for several years and has solidified herself as an outspoken advocate for the overhaul of the education system. She has served on various school boards and associations throughout her career, one being the Michigan Board of Education. She is also an extremely polarizing figure in the press, with people being on both sides of the fence when it comes to her policies. This general mistrust or praise leaves her in a situation where she is forced to do what she believes is the best course of action for the entire country. She has always been one to push against the status quo in the hopes of solidifying a position she believes to be the only option. She has looked at the education crisis from every single angle and she now knows what needs to be done to secure the American future.
A major issue that Betsy DeVos talks about through much of her campaigning and her impassioned speeches is parental rights to school choice. While many people see the right to determine where your children attend school to be fundamental, there are many officials that push back against such a notion because they know that it will challenge their student populations when parents begin to withdraw their children from those systems. It is a major issue that is growing for many parents, especially when they have children coming home who are upset because they are not able to keep up with the coursework. They may feel as though they are not able to ask questions, or they are in a class that is so large that they are lost in a sea of students. Betsy DeVos sees these issues and she is not impressed with the things that the public-school system has done to resolve them.
She believes that the redeeming feature for the country will be within the walls of a private institution. This is going to be where students can receive an education that is methodical, thoughtful, and more tailored to their individual needs. The staff will be well trained, and the schools will be well-funded because parents are paying a tuition in order for their children to be there. This amount of money that the parents are paying will also ensure that they take a greater interest in their children’s education because they want to be sure that they are receiving what they are paying for. If they have a child that is constantly coming home with poor marks, they will feel more empowered to talk to the student’s teacher about it. Betsy DeVos believes that this is one of the only ways to increase American test scores and secondary matriculation. Students need to be put into a position where they are given a better shot, on an individual basis. They need to stop being put into situations where they are part of the masses and expected to succeed.
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