Betsy DeVos: Philanthropist, Political Leader, Education Reformer

In a recent interview, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos submitted to wide-ranging questioning about a host of different issues. DeVos was appointed by President Donald Trump Secretary of Education and the beginning of his term in office.

 

DeVos is the daughter of a wealthy Michigan family who married Dick DeVos, the son of the founder of AmWay. She has been active in philanthropic work for years. This has included donating time and money to programs designed to improve the education of children in the United States. In this regard, DeVos has been an outspoken advocate for school choice.

 

During her interview, DeVos stated she is optimistic about the state of school choice in the United States at this time. She noted that there are approximately a quarter of a million students enrolled in 33 publicly funded private choice schools in 17 states and Washington, D.C. She noted that these programs are expanding, remarking that in the past year, 40,000 more students were enrolled in publicly funded private choice programs that were a year earlier. She added that polling in states where school choice, including voucher programs, are available indicates that these programs are highly popular.

 

DeVos traces her interest in school choice to the time her own children entered primary school. She and her husband enrolled them in a Grand Rapids private, religious school.

 

DeVos dedication to education broadly speaking has taken her from supporting programs, with time, talent, and money, in Michigan and across the United States. She was on the board of directors of the Kennedy Foundation and developed and now assists in funding an education program through this iconic organization.

 

In addition to her philanthropic work, DeVos has been involved in politics for an extended period of time, long before her appointment as Secretary of Education. She served as the Chairperson of the Michigan Republican Party. Her husband ran for Governor of Michigan.

 

DeVos believes her biggest success to date is her work on the Florida tax-credit scholarship program. Since its creation in the Sunshine State, Florida has over 50,000 students attending schools of their choices. She advocates for the replication of this type of programming in other states.

 

In rounding out her interview, DeVos underscored that she believes bipartisanship is crucial to improving the U.S. education system. She hopes to be able to accomplish meaningful bipartisan initiatives during her time as U.S. Secretary of Education. Learn more: http://www.betsydevos.com/policy-involvement/

End Citizens United’s Expected $35 Million May Influence Midterm Election

Congressional candidate Jon Ossoff made a lot of Republicans nervous in the April 18 special election for Georgia’s District 6 seat – he came within two percentage points of claiming a seat for the Democrats party deep in traditional Republican territory.

 

Ossoff’s strong showing can be attributed in part to $500,000 in campaign cash provided by End Citizens United, a Political Action Committee formed in 2015 which has just one goal – to overturn the 2010 Supreme Court Ruling known as Citizens United.

 

The controversial Supreme Court ruling opened the floodgates for tens of millions of dollars in campaign contributions by Super PACS to candidates of their choice. It’s a situation that is widely viewed to heavily favor Republicans.

 

However, both Democrats and Republicans can raise almost unlimited sums of cash thanks to the Supreme Court ruling. Now End Citizens United wants to put a stop to it.

 

End Citizen United proponents say that allowing unlimited cash contributions to campaigns – which come from super-wealthy individuals and big corporations – has essentially disenfranchised the average American voter, especially those among the middle and lower classes.

 

The Citizens United Ruling allows the “buying and selling” of our nation’s highest political offices, critics of the ruling say.

 

It’s clear that End Citizens United has caught fire – the organization was hoping to raise $25 million in 2017, but it is well on track to raise at least $35 million. That would beat its 2016 contribution take by some $10 million.

 

In the case of Job Ossoff, End Citizens United raised an astounding $4 million, and extraordinary amount for a race in this suburban Atlanta district. Ossoff must now face a runoff election to be held in June against Republican challenger Karen Handel. The race is expected to be extremely close, and Handel is still favored in District 6 which has been held by Republicans for decades.

 

Retaking control of the entire U.S. House of Representatives is a major goal of Democrats in the coming 2018 midterm elections. If the ultimate goal of End Citizens United is to be achieved, only a Democrat-controlled House can make it happen.

 

That means Jon Ossoff will not be the only benefactor from End Citizens United’s $35 million war chest. Democratic candidates across the nation can expect significant contributions from this PAC, which reports that its average contributor gives just $12.

 

Small donations from hundreds of thousands of ordinary citizens is something about which End Citizens United is especially proud. That’s the way a real democracy should work, they say — ordinary people getting a big say, $1 to $12 dollar at a time.

 

 

Hussain Sajwani, an Emirati Entrepreneur

Hussain Sajwani is a Dubai born Emirati national and one of the region’s premier bussinesmen. His entrepreneurial spirit led him to establish a catering business that quickly rose to prominence. It quickly became a success by partnering with the US military and other large consumers. Not stopping there, Hussain Sajwani went on to make a fortune in real estate by establishing DAMAC Properties. Read more: Meet Our Board | DAMAC Properties

Specializing in expensive real estate such as hotels, golf courses and luxury apartments, DAMAC Properties has played an important part in the Emirati and world markets.

As the founder, Hussain Sajwani saw the opportunity in Arab Gulf real estate just as it was seeing its rise and also anticipated the dangers of the economic downturn of this century in time to prepare for it. Learn more about Hussain Sajwani Family: http://www.thenational.ae/business/industry-insights/property/damac-chairman-relishes-his-roots

As chairman and CEO of DAMAC Properties, Hussain Sajwani increased the reach of his company throughout the Arab Gulf, Middle East and all over the world. This was in part done by cultivating relationships with important people.

One such important relationship is with current American president Donald Trump. Before Mr. Trump’s foray into the political arena, he and Mr. Sajwani have cooperated in the Trump International Golf Club and in other business ventures.

Their collaboration saw the establishment of two golf courses in the United Arab Emirates. This relationship, however, is not simply business. Both men are friends and personally host and entertain one another at their homes.

With Donald Trump’s assumption of the presidency, Hussain Sajwani and DAMAC Properties are expected to maintain a good working relationship with the Trump business enterprise.

Through all this success, Hussain Sajwani has not lost his concern for the world and connection with his beginnings. Mr. Sajwani has been generous to various charities particularly ones that focus on raising the standard of living globally. For example, in the Islamic month of Ramadan, Hussain Sajwani contributed two million AED to clothe needy and deprived children.