You have probably heard of the DeVos family name. They have been all over the political spectrum since the 2016 election. In fact, President Trump appointed Betsy DeVos to the 11th Office of US Education Secretary in 2017 after he was elected. Betsy DeVos has been a polarizing figure and a champion for educational choice. Her husband Dick DeVos has also been working towards a political career. He recently joined the Management Advisory Council for the Federal Aviation Administration.
Dick DeVos has always wanted to work in aviation. He has been a pilot for many years, and he has become a successful pilot school founder along with his wife. Together, they built the West Michigan Aviation Academy, where students can train to become pilots. DeVos has plenty of experience in that regard. He has several licenses to fly helicopters and jets, but it’s his passion to also help out airports.
In fact, Dick DeVos is credited with putting Grand Rapids on the map. He started by working with business leaders in town. He wanted to help them restart the commerce epicenter of the town. He did so by building up the downtown business district with buildings such as the DeVos Place Convention Center and DeVos Performance Hall. The Andel Arena was also built at this time.
DeVos has continued to work with the CEOs of the Grand Rapids airport. In fact, he has been credited with helping the airport get back on its feet in the early 2000s. At the time, no one even really knew that the small airport existed. However, DeVos was going to change all of that. He started talking to airline executives at the airport, and he even got the AirTran Airways CEO to agree to open up new flights.
This was a huge deal in the early 2000s as there weren’t too many airports that had the same flights. However, DeVos wanted to put Grand Rapids on the map as a business traveler location. The destinations opened up new ticket sales for the airport and finally, there were thousands of tickets being sold per day. For the next two decades, the airport would continue to grow until it would become known as one of the top airports in the United States and received $45 million in funding for renovations.
DeVos will continue to work with the FAA through 2020.
Visit http://www.dbdvfoundation.org/about to learn more.