Betsy DeVos born January 8, 1958. She was nominated for the position of Secretary of Education by President Donald Trump. The nomination was approved by Senate a short time later, on February 7, 2017. The vote was close, 61-50, with Vice-president Mike Pence breaking the tie vote.
Betsy DeVos has been dedicated to education her entire life. She has donated most of her life and time to the subject of education and freedom of choice in education. According to LATimes.com, she is in favor of a school voucher program, allowing the parents of children who are schooled in the private sector away from a public schools to use those vouchers for a return for the money they spent in the private schools. This would allow competition among schools. And, according to DeVos, competition will make education better by the course of each separate school competing with one another for the best in record, just like colleges of today.
She has sought, through the school charter system, to improve schools and make the charter schools a ‘for profit’ system that will allow more competition for the parents’ dollar, thereby making the schools better for the students.
Believing in education for the betterment of the country, she has for years devoted much of her time and energy focused on making our schools a better place for students. This has been the crux of much of her charitable donations and the driving factor behind her political aspirations.
Betsy DeVos is a very active member of the Michigan Republican Party, and supported Jeb Bush and then Marco Rubio.
With her husband, she founded the DeVos Family Foundation to perform charitable work for education. Donating nearly $12 million in 2016, this brought the contributions of her and her husband to a life time total of over $100 million.
President George Bush appointed her to the board of directors of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in 2004. She served in that position until 2010. She and her husband funded a center to teach managers how to raise funds.
The DeVos husband and wife team donated over $22 million in 2010 to continue teaching arts managers. This donation was given in the name of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management.
She and her family also founded ArtPrize, an art competition held in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Betsy DeVos is married to the entrepreneur Dick DeVos. DeVos is the former CEO of the multi-level marketing company, Amway. He calls himself a philanthropist and an activist. Together, they have four children and five grandchildren.
Read her interview with Philantrophy Table.