Betsy DeVos, the one of a kind politician and entrepreneur with a philanthropic heart
Elisabeth (Betsy) DeVos was born on January 8, 1958. She was nominated as the Secretary of Education by the President-elect Donald Trump on November 23, 2016. She is a member of the Republican Party and has been known for her commitment to supporting the school voucher programs, a school for choice, and charter schools. She has served as the Republican National Committeewoman for the State of Michigan from 1992 to 1997 and as chairwoman from 1996 to 2000 with re-election in 2003 for the same position at the Michigan Republican Party.
Apart from her being in active politics for over 35 years, Betsy is renowned businesswoman, educational activist, and philanthropist. She served as the chairwoman of the board at the Action Institute and Alliance for School Choice. Betsy has also headed the All Children Matter PAC. She is known to always give back to the society. This is evident by her serving formerly on the board of directors of The Philanthropy Roundtable, and the former chair of the American Federation for Children. She has also proved her generosity to the society by serving on various boards including the American Enterprise Institute, ArtPrize, DeVos Institute for Arts Management situated at the University of Maryland, and the Foundation for Excellence in Education.
Betsy DeVos is married to Dick DeVos, son of the Amway co-founder Richard DeVos. Together they have four children and five grandchildren. She graduated from the Calvin College which is in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with a Bachelor of Arts degree. Betsy and her husband Dick DeVos share a philanthropic and entrepreneurial mindset. Together in 1989, they started the Dick and Betsy DeVos Foundation. The main purpose of this organization is to give back to the society in a bid to cultivate leadership qualities. They are motivated by faith to transform those who are around them through this is five support areas; arts, community, leadership, education, and justice.
In 2015, the DeVos Family Foundation donated $11.6 million to charitable organizations, which include; the Center for Individual Rights, Michigan’s Foundation for Traditional Values, Institute for Justice, Action Institute, Michigan’s Pregnancy Resource Center, Baptists for Life, and the Right to Life Michigan Educational Fund. This brought the total amount of charity the couple has contributed to $139 million. In 2015, they were ranked number 24 on the Forbes list of American top givers. Through their DeVos Family Foundation, Betsy has managed to donate large amounts of money to hospitals, schools, conservation groups, health research programs, and evangelical missions. Between 1999 and 2014, the DeVos Family Foundation has donated $50 million to Christian organizations. During the same time, their foundation managed to donate $8.6 million to support private Christian schools, $5.2 million to aid charter schools and $59,750 to public schools. Apart from this, Betsy DeVos has given specific donations to Christian schools which include; $652,000 for the Ada Christian School, $2.39 million to the Grand Rapids Christian High School Association and $458,000 to the Holland Christian Schools.
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