Dick DeVos is a successful businessman who has held executive positions in various institutions such as Amway, The Windquest Group (he is currently the president) and the Orlando Magic. He spent nine years as head of Amway from 1993-2002,being in charge of all its operations spanning 50 countries in 6 continents and reported $4.5 billion profit in his last fiscal year as Amway’s president. Before that he was Vice president in the same organization. He has also been Chief Executive Officer of Orlando Magic for 3 years.
Mr. DeVos has been involved in community initiatives, particularly through the Dick and Betsy foundation which he co-runs with his wife Betsy DeVos. He is the founder of Education Freedom fund which has so far awarded over 4000 scholarships to Michigan’s underprivileged children. He is also founder of Michigan’s Aviation Academy that aims to offer aviation focused education programs. He has also served as member in the State’s Education board, and got appointed to the management advisory council of federal aviation administration. He is married with 7 children and 6 grandchildren.
Role in education reform
Dick DeVos, through their family foundation, has been extensively involved in advocating for educational reforms through their educational-choice movement, which advocates for kids, especially from underprivileged families, to access good education in private or better public school systems. It was borne out of their desire to help parents, majorly those from lower income families, to be able to have choices when selecting schools for their children. The movements success can be seen, so far about 250000 children from 33 publicly funded choice programs within 17 states. The number of students involved in the choice programs has grown by 40000 and new programs got launched in Virginia, New Hampshire, Louisiana and Pennsylvania, with expansions being seen in Ohio, Florida and Arizona. In Indiana, over 10000 students have already been enrolled in the program, which is barely 2 years old in that state.
The end goal of his foundations role in education choice advocacy
This is all being done with the hope that it will enable parents, regardless of their background and financial capabilities, to have an equal opportunity in choosing what educational setting they think is best for their children. This way, Mr. DeVos hopes that those students will have the opportunity to exploit and fulfill their potentials and talents to the maximum and for the communities ultimate good.
To learn more, visit http://dickdevos.com.