I was recently reading a Philanthropy Roundtable interview with education reform specialist Betsy DeVos that filled me with a sense of pride about the work she and husband Dick DeVos have and continue to achieve on this important issue. The interview gave me a brief background of both Dick and Betsy, and made much of their conservative beliefs and support of Republican programs across the U.S. No matter what side of the political spectrum readers like myself may fall on the fact the couple are willing to work closely with both Republicans, Democrats, and independent politicians across the nation to achieve their education reform goals shows just how committed to the cause they have become. A question in the interview asked how important Republican Governors in Florida, Louisiana, and Indiana had been in passing legislation backing education reform in their own states, Betsy DeVos went on to explain how she and Dick DeVos have worked with Democratic politicians and those from smaller parties or independents to make sure as many families as possible have the chance to choose how their young people are educated.
Dick DeVos may have been classed as the 67th richest person in the U.S. with a presonal fortune estimated to have reached more than $5 billion through his personal business interests and involvement in the AmWay Group. A Wikipedia article I read about Dick DeVos explained how his entire life has bene focused on personal achievement as Dick spent many days during his childhood within the halls of the AmWay Group his father established; Dick’s father Richard has always struck me as an important figure for his role in making sure philanthropy was always part of everyday life for members of the DeVos family. One area Dick and Betsy DeVos have worked towards is the charter schools program they lead in Michigan, which has led to the establishment of the West Michigan Aviation Academy that focuses on young people with a love of flying and the equipment used in human flight.