Both Dick and Betsy Devos have always worked on various issues that would improve the community and the country in general. For example, when Dick was the CEO of Amway, he campaigned against a local project that would have potentially led to the eventual deterioration and decline of the city. Betsy Devos and Dick Devos have both campaigned for and championed for education reform.
Dick Devos has also campaigned for more freedom for Michigan workers. Michigan has long been a stronghold for unions, and many people who wanted to get a job would need to become union members. Dick worked hard so that workers would not have to join the unions just because they needed to earn a living.
Betsy Devos campaign for education reform. She championed the needs of charter schools. She encouraged her husband to open up a charter school himself. He opened up the West Michigan Aviation Academy. This school does not charge tuition, even though it is a charter school. It is open to the public, and anyone who wants can join. Dick and Betsy Devos both support the school. They have given it millions of dollars. The school also gets grants from the state for each student that is enrolled in the school.
Besides teaching aviation, which is done using its two Cessna planes, the school teaches subjects that are related to aviation, including engineering. Of course, it also provides classes in regular subjects, such as math and literature.
The West Michigan Aviation Academy gives students the ability to live out their dreams. One student commutes three hours each weekend back and forth from her home to the school. Some may think it is a long commute, but to her, it is worth it. Learn more: http://www.philanthropyroundtable.org/topic/excellence_in_philanthropy/interview_with_betsy_devos
The head of engineering at the University of Michigan said that he has visited the West Michigan Aviation Academy a few times. He said that he was blown away by what he had seen. He was extremely impressed by the diversity of the students, their work ethic, and the quality of the school in general.
Dick Devos was also tapped to oversee the Federal Aviation Administration. He sits on a board of thirteen other members, who work together to decide on aviation policies. His career as a pilot and as the founder of the West Michigan Aviation Academy played a role in the decision to pick him.