Top American Businessman, Dick Devos

Dick Devos is one of the top businessman in America right now. With his involvement in the FAA, it’s clear that he has been helping to rebuild America’s aviation infrastructure with his knowledge from helping the Gerald R. Ford International Airport. While many don’t realize it, Devos was the reason that the airport became one of the top airports in America in just two short decades.


Devos has been working with the Gerald R. Ford International Airport since the early 2000s. At the time, he wanted to bring more ticket sales to the airport and had a great strategy to help. He had already put other pieces in place to make the plan a success, starting with the Devos Place Convention Center.


Starting in the 1990s, Devos joined other business leaders in Grand Rapids to create new opportunities for busineses in downtown. They wanted to create a business commerce area that was popular and would drive growth for the metropolis. They were able to build up areas like Devos Performance Hall, Devos Place Convention Center, and Andel Arena.


However, Devos saw that the airport had another piece to play in the strategy. He wanted to bring in business travelers who were already headed to other business conference destinations in Orlando, Las Vegas, Denver, and St. Louis. He was able to get the CEO of AirTran Airways on board, and even got the CEO to agree to have new destinations in place at the Grand Rapids location.


This led to an instant boost in ticket sales that would guide the rest of the growth for the airport. Devos has been working with the Gerald R. Ford International Airport for some time in a support and advisory role. He has helped bring new airlines to the airport, and he has also secured funding to help the airport expand and renovate when it needed to build out new features for business travelers.


The Gateway Transformation Project started in 2016 as a way to build up the airport and offer new services to business travelers. Now it’s because a two-phase project that has increased the technology at the airport dramatically. There is even a pilot training school on campus that was founded by the Devos family.


Dick Devos has been working in Washington with his wife, the 11th US Education Secretary Betsy Devos. It’s clear that he has been trying to work in politics for some time, but after his gubernatorial election in 2006 in Michigan, he stayed out of the political spotlight until now. The FAA has been working with Devos to help with policies across the country and see how to use budgets to expand airports and technology.


Devos will continue to work with the FAA through 2020. Currently, he meets with the council once every quarter to discuss the latest budgets and plans for airports across America.


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