I am passionate about education reform. Since my college days at Calvin College, I have not been the one to shy away from politics. For over thirty years, I have been in charge of all manner of political events and activities such as political action committees, party campaigns, and organization. I spent six years as the chairperson of the Michigan Republican Party. I have held various political positions since 1976.
I am currently the Chairperson of the Windquest Group, a private investment company with interests in clean energy, technology, and manufacturing. We established Windquest in 1989 with my husband, Dick DeVos. Dick has previously worked with Amway, and he was also the president of the famous Orlando Magic basketball franchise.
As an ardent advocate of choice in education, I am an excellent choice to chair the American Federation for Children, AFC. In addition, I also head the Alliance for School Choice. I am glad that the private choice programs in education are rapidly gaining traction. New programs are coming up in states that did not have them, and existing ones are expanding. Scores of voters are expressing their support for choice in education especially among the Latino communities.
Betsy Devos involvement in education reform started right here in Michigan. When our children became of school age, we felt that every parent should have a choice in the education their child gets. My husband and I unsuccessfully tried to propose an amendment to the constitution of the state of Michigan to support choice in education in 2000. That marked the start of my commitment to AFC.
I am committed to achieving excellence in business, philanthropy and community development. Our giving efforts reflect our Christian faith and political beliefs. Through our philanthropy platform, the Dick and Betsy DeVos Family Foundation, we are passionate about education, children, and politics. We launched the Foundation in 1989 and have realized tremendous success since.
For example in 2012, we gave over $11 million to charitable causes. Between 1999 and 2014, the foundation was able to disburse over $100 million to various causes including Christian organizations, rights groups, and education. Since 1989 to date, our political support runs over $140 million. In 2015, we made it to number twenty-four on the Forbes list of America’s top donors. In the same year, our giving efforts reached over $11 million.
I continue to support dozens of causes through the foundation. Besides the GOP and related political groups, some of the other organizations that receive our support include Potters House, West Michigan Aviation Academy, which my husband runs, the Acton Institute, the Kennedy Center and ArtPrize among many others. In addition, I support public policy, civic education, community development, the church, health services, the arts and leadership development.
I believe politicians have a duty to positively impact the lives of future generations through active community engagement and policy reform. Visit betsydevos.com to know more about Betsy.