Dick Devos

The early days of Grand Rapids were a bit stagnant. The city hadn’t seen too much growth. However, the DeVos family was there to help the town. It was in the 1990s that DeVos went a step further and began working with local leaders through Grand Action. The committee was there to ensure that city planning included new ideas to promote commerce and growth. Since that time, Grand Rapids has grown considerably. Now it’s one of the fastest growing places in America. Part of that has to do with the new buildings and support from the Devos Family Foundation.

 

Devos now works with the Federal Aviation Administration in Washington in addition to leading his own company and working with student pilots. The Federal Aviation Administration nominated DeVos after seeing his work with the Gerald R. Ford International Airport. Through his work with the airlines like AirTran Airways, he was able to bring in more business. Ultimately, this helped the airport become more popular with the business traveler crowd.

 

DeVos then also talked to the CEO of Southwest when the company bought out AirTran in the 2000s. He convinced the CEO that he should expand services at the airport because of how well the strategy had worked to bring in new travelers. Southwest’s CEO agreed, and the airport grew again. Now it will be completing a $45 million renovation in 2018, which will have a new business traveler center, as well as a new food court.

 

The FAA has come under fire from the president for falling behind other countries in terms of security and modern technology. It will be up to the FAA to continue to meet these challengers in the next years. Part of that will be Devos working with them on what they can do help airports improve services and get funding to do so. Devos was able to help Gerald R. Ford International Airport expand.

 

Of course, there are those who also wonder whether Dick Devos is shooting for another goal by joining the FAA. Will he be working towards political aspirations? It’s too soon to tell. For now, his wife, the 11th US Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos continues to hold down the fort.

 

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Former President and CEO of Amway, Dick DeVos

The Federal Aviation Administration is going through some changes. The new policies and regulations for the American aviation industry will place more emphasis on technology being used for security and ticket sales in aviation. This has been a long time coming as many have criticized American aviation for falling behind competitors in global markets. Those criticisms were also heard by the FAA’s new council that was just formed last year. The new Management Advisory Council inducted many members in 2017, including the legendary businessman Dick DeVos of Amway fame.

 

Former President and CEO of Amway, Dick DeVos has been through a few busy years. He has been campaigning with his wife, the US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, while also running his own business The Windquest Group. Previously he worked as the President and CEO of Amway for many years. Many know him from his ownership of the Orlando Magic and Orland’s Amway Arena.

 

However, there is more to DeVos than meets the eye. For one, he has been a pilot for many years and has worked closely with the CEOs of several airlines, as well as the CEO of the Grand Rapids airport. As his home, Grand Rapids receives a lot of his attention. From community building events to city planning to expanding the airport, DeVos has been involved in one way or another in Grand Rapids.

 

In the early 1990s, DeVos was working with a group of business leaders to bring more commerce and industry to the downtown sector. However, many of the plans were trying to place new arenas and convention centers away from the downtown. DeVos didn’t want to work with those plans after seeing what had happened to Detroit after disastrous city planning led the abandonment of their downtown areas.

 

DeVos wanted to help build up the area in different ways. He formed Grand Action, which brought together all of the business leaders in the area, and then he worked with those leaders to build new organizations and buildings across the city, including a new performing arts center and convention center.

 

However, one of his main focuses was the Grand Rapids airport, which re-launched in 1999 under Gerald R. Ford International Airport. This airport has gone through considerable changes in the past five years as it has added on new destinations and terminals, leading to a $45 million renovation project to add on new technology, business traveler center, and food court areas.

 

Much of what DeVos is doing for the FAA will help airlines, as that has been his focus for many years. However, he also worked with his wife to found the aviation charter school on the grounds of the Gerald R. Ford airport. The new school trains pilots and others, allowing them the opportunity to become a pilot after graduation. As the FAA tackles some issues with pilot training and employment, it will be interesting to see what DeVos has to say.

 

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Moral Character Is As Important To Eva Moskowitz As Academics

Education has always played a major role in the life of Success Academy founder Eva Moskowitz who spent a long career passing through various educational institutions as she sought to continue her education in its most effective form.

The issues seen by Eva Moskowitz in the Harlem public school system prompted her to run for office in local government on a series of reform policies in Harlem and across New York; the Johns Hopkins graduate became known in political circles for her skills as an investigator who was known to look at every possible aspect of the Harlem public school system as she set out to create a better experience for students across Harlem and the 32 campuses across the state of New York.

 

The founder of the Success Academy has seen the school outperform Harlem’s public school system in terms of test results, but for Eva Moskowitz the need to build positive members of society is far more important than simply achieving academic success; the academic achievements of Eva Moskowitz saw her become a History professor and an important member of the Prep for Prep group that provided mentors for gifted students from minority backgrounds. Using her own knowledge of the education system has seen Eva become a major part of the national education reform movement as the charter school system she founded is now seen as a major part of the success achieved in new York and beyond on behalf of students who may not have been able to achieve similar levels of achievement in the public school system.

 

The Success Academy has been a major success for Eva Moskowitz and the thousands of students who attend these charter schools on a regular basis where a common sense approach to school is being taken. One aspect of education that has been addressed at Success Academy is the return of an education focused on the children, not on making it as easy as possible for adults to operate the public school system in the easiest possible form.

Betsy DeVos: Education for All

The kids who attend public schools do not get the best chance at the greatest education possible and Betsy DeVos knows that. For that reason, she wants to change the system and make it so that every child – no matter their economic situation – is able to get the education that they deserve. She knows that the system is broken and, as the Secretary of Education, she is going to continue working on fixing it by using all of the different options that she has curated throughout her years as a philanthropist. She wants to make things better for children so that they will be able to get the best education possible and something that will work for everyone.

DeVos recognizes in her education beliefs that not all children are able to learn the same way. For that reason, public education is not the best for every student and some are losing out on what they could be learning if they only had the opportunities that other children had. Devos wants to make it so that children will have the chance to choose between which will work for them. She also knows that parents know their children far better than any school system will and she wants to make sure that they are going to be able to use that to their best advantage.

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It is important to note that the education system reform that DeVos has come up with is aimed at tailoring different education options at the individual students. She wants all kids to be able to go to public school or a charter school if that works better. She was one of the biggest supporters behind education choices when the idea first became well known and she continues to push to make it an option so that children will have a better chance at a good education.

Part of her ability to see where people should be and the way that children should have opportunities comes from the philanthropic ventures that her and her husband have created. They have worked with children who are underprivileged and who do not have an educational choice. She has seen firsthand how economics influence education and she wants to put an end to that. With the charity work that they have done, Betsy DeVos has made huge strides in the changes for these kids and with the different options that they have to choose from public, charter or even private schools. Read her interview with Philanthropy Table.