Betsy DeVos is a noted philanthropist in the United States, in particular for educational, cultural, and artistic causes. She is also the co-founder and Chairwoman of The Windquest Group which invests in technology, clean energy, and manufacturing. She is married to Dick DeVos and together they created a charitable foundation called the Dick & Betsy DeVos Family Foundation.
Betsy and Dick founded The Windquest Group in 1989. Among their clean energy ventures is one called The Green Machine which converts heat that would otherwise be wasted during the manufacturing of products to instead be turned into electricity. The company looks at sustainability through the lens of economic viability. If a venture is not economically viable, due to such factors as being too reliant on subsidies or tax credits, then it’s not going to be sustainable in the long run.
Among the recipients of donations by the Dick & Betsy DeVos Family Foundation (www.dbdvfoundation.org) is the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, of which Betsy DeVos is a former member of the Board of Directors. The focus of their donation to the center was to train the next generation of managers and board directors in the art field to learn how to fundraise and manage the organizations they would be leading. Another art-related project that they have given to is ArtPrize which hold an annual international art competition.
The family’s foundation has supported a wide range of educational opportunities for young people. They award students working to earn a Bachelor of Business Administration at Northwood University through the Betsy and Dick DeVos Scholars for Free Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Scholarship. The Foundation For Excellence in Education which is a think tank in Florida that is focused on educational reform is where Betsy also serves on the board.
In her home state of Michigan, Betsy DeVos supports the West Michigan Aviation Academy. This is a tuition-free school the Devos’ founded where high school age children across the area can learn the skills needed to one day enter the field of aviation. The academy, opened in 2010, is located at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids. The academy has experienced rapid growth and can now teach up to 500 students each year. In addition to teaching kids the skills they need they also teach them character values such as respect and trust. The rigorous educational standards that the academy holds to prepares the students for success in life and career. Visit Betsy’s website here: http://www.betsydevos.com/