Going door-to-door for a school fund-raiser, I walked the winding, Anglophile streets – Kent Drive, Kings Point Drive – that looped around to the Intracoastal Waterway and back again in a closed circuit. The farther I strayed from our street, the larger the houses became. One house looked like an old-time plantation. Another had a waterfall in the center of its circular driveway, and a bright blue roof. I stood in dark foyers and bright, airy kitchens, saw antique furniture and shiny out-of-the-box appliances and mysterious works of art.
Besides earning money off your own sales, you also earn a percentage of the income generated by the distributors that you've brought into the program (these are known as your downline). Often there are bonuses for selling particular amounts of product or signing up a certain number of new members; you can earn cars and trips as well as cash. Sounds good, doesn't it? And being part of a well-run MLM business can be a lot like being a member of a large extended family.
I have not purchased anything from Amway in years, but I did like a number of their products. I particularly liked their cleaning supplies. I also think that Amway products were fairly high quality and had a good guarantee. I also think that Amway prices were fairly high. I would also prefer to order online than through a distributor, particularly a multi-level distributor who wants you to join their down-line marketing group. I had a fairly positive experience. The individual I ordered from was a personal friend, so we had a good relationship. She also gave me free samples of products so I could see if I liked them before I ordered them.
“This is an extremely contentious, controversial business model,” business consultant and author Robert L. FitzPatrick told the Detroit Free Press in 2006. “If you go to work for Hewlett-Packard, you don’t walk in the door saying, ‘Hey, I wonder if this is a scam?’ But anybody who gets into multilevel marketing will have to deal with that question.”
I love this company. I love all the stories I hear how people succeeded in their lives. It is low cost to get in. It is only $ 50 yearly fee just to stay active. You are not abligated to buy every month if you dont' want to. this company has the best compansation plan especially when you grow in this business, you get increadible surprise reward checks and more.
Robert Carroll, of the Skeptic's Dictionary, has described Amway as a "legal pyramid scheme", and has said that the quasi-religious devotion of its affiliates is used by the company to conceal poor performance rates by distributors.[107] Erik German's memoir My Father's Dream documents the real life failures of German's father as he is lured into "get-rich-quick" schemes such as Amway.[108]
In the canonical 6-4-2 pyramid, the “Direct Distributor” on top receives a 25 percent “Performance Bonus” on the entire group’s spending.[7] The Performance Bonuses that go to his six “legs” (12 percent of their sub-groups’ spending) are deducted from his own, leaving him with a 13 percent profit. In turn, they payout 6 percent bonuses to their four “legs,” who payout 3 percent bonuses to their two. Those bottom forty-eight distributors, in other words, get back 3 percent of everything they spend while the top distributor gets 13 percent of everything they spend. (The amount of all checks are calculated, incidentally, by Amway’s central computer and distributed by Amway; uplines don’t actually write checks to their downlines.) It would amount to the same thing if the distributors at the bottom were to receive the 25 percent rebate—and then pay fees directly to their uplines equal to 3 percent, 6 percent, and 13 percent of their purchases.
The compensation plan is called a “stairstep breakaway,” which requires the business rep to effectively rebuild a leg once it has reached what’s called Platinum status (7500 points). Basically, legs break off once they qualify and the commissions turn into 4% royalties instead of commissioned payouts of ~30%. I asked a former Amway emerald once what it was like having his first leg break-off and his reply was: “it’s awful, you really know how to ask painful questions don’t you.” He went on to explain his commissions dropped by at least 80% when they turned into “royalties.” It should be noted that the royalties technically disappear if the volume in the leg drops below 7500 points, so it’s not really a “permanent” royalty unless you maintain your volume. It is in essence a “punishing” compensation plan that forces you to rebuild a leg once it reaches this trigger volume, effectively causing you to “not” want others to pass you up. 

What do u think of Senegence? I was talked in to joining and have a ton of issues with the way the company operates. If I were told that purchasing product would be this stressful I would have never joined. They have sold me products they don't have! Kept my monney for a 2 months at a time and are out of stock on 99% of the items 99% of the time. When they release a Lipsense color the site freezes and by the time(meaning hours) you get in the the product you want is gone. Senegence doesn't put limits on the amount of products one distributor can buy. Growing your business should be the only stressful part of a company NOT GETTING PRODUCTS! at this point I feel as if I've been very mislead and any advice Your be greatly appreciated. Thank you
I had a very good experience with Amway. They have very nice people on website to help you, the employees know about all of the products that they sell. This probably one of the reasons they have been in business for so long. Also, they are a very good company that has top quality products. Amway probably has a large amount of orders to handle every day. However, the prices are very high on most products. They can probably keep the prices this high because all of the people that buy their products are used to paying the higher prices for wonderful products.
The centerpiece of any Rally is the life-story told by the guest of honor, emphasizing the depths of his pre-Amway rut and his resurrection through The Business. That evening’s featured guest, Executive Diamond Bill Hawkins, however, was too arrogant even to feign the requisite humility in his testimonial. He had been great all his life: a talented musician in one of Minneapolis’s best bands, a brilliant school teacher, a voracious reader, a charming companion with hundreds of loyal friends, and an unbelievably prodigious drinker of beer (about which he was now “ashamed”). When he saw The Plan and realized that he was much smarter than the guy showing it, he knew that his ship had finally come in: Here, at last, was something that would adequately reward his greatness[16].
When I told my parents about the business, they were immediately skeptical, but since my dad is a salesman he was supportive. The next week I was in the middle of teaching and got a phone call from the girl. She claimed that she had gotten a "last minute ticket" to their Thursday night meeting. She tried to describe how exclusive it is and basically hinted how honored I should feel to be invited. Unfortunately, it was so last minute we just couldn't do it. We were too tired after a long day at work. The following Thursday we went to the meeting. It was the strangest experience, and it was WAY too long. We didn't get home till 11 o'clock, and my husband had to be at work by 7:15. We were exhausted. Every few days we were having to meet for training with our mentors as well as watching videos and listening to CDs. They make sure to consume your life with a little bit of positive Amway, so you don't listen to the negative Amway. Guys, this literally can be described as a brainwashing method.
Another reward of the Gomez family’s success was flexibility. Vicky credits their involvement with Amway for enabling the couple to be present in their kids’ lives, while instilling the importance of working hard and giving back. Their example has influenced the next generation, inspiring their eldest son, Adam Jr., to found a nonprofit organization called The Road to Help, which provides blankets to the homeless in the Los Angeles area.
Rich and Jay go into business together selling Nutrilite vitamins, an early multilevel marketing scheme for which Jay’s second cousin and his parents are already distributors. When Nutrilite goes kaput in 1948 after an FDA crackdown on their ‘excessive claims’ regarding the products’ nutritional values (about which Rich only says, ‘Until then, there had been no official government position on what type of claims could be made about dietary supplements’), he and Jay strike out on their own – the American way. They can do it! We know they can!
But there were some interesting results that threatened to shake up the rankings, none more so than Clemson's narrow 28-26 win over Texas A&M. The Aggies had their chances to pull even late in the fourth quarter. However, Quartney Davis fumbled into the end zone for a touchback after being tackled just before the goal line, and Texas A&M couldn't convert a potential game-tying two-point conversion in the dying moments. 
Amway is not a pyramid scheme. It's very tough to be successful because you have to become a leader and set the example for your downline. The reason why everyone has to attend the meetings and functions are because of 3 reasons: 1) It educates people into having a Business Owner Mindset 2) It keeps people motivated and positive because it's tough and people give a lot of hate 3) Money is raised so that people get paid. Even if there are cons to the the prices and meetings, thats how the business works. You can't change a business if you don't like it. You can't do what you want in regular jobs. You have to work with whatever you have. In addition, in every business there will always be people dominating at the top and people at the bottom. The difference between these people is that the ones at the top used a certain way to get to the top. Working hard doesn't necessarily mean you'll be successful. You also have to work smart. So to finish up, Amway is not a traditional business because you don't need a degree to do it. It is a business though, so you need to work at it the way it has to be worked (MLM) to be successful.
Once Amway has their claws in, they get their new recruit to switch everything over so they essentially become their own customer. By ordering household and beauty products through their own online store, they pay a premium for everyday items and get a small kickback which they try to sell as this amazing perk, but I don’t see why you wouldn’t just choose something else.
“Here we are three years into [the Herbalife battle] and it’s no clearer than it was at the beginning,” Keep told me when we spoke. If the government had rules about where the line was between an illegal pyramid scheme and a legal multilevel marketing company, there wouldn’t be any such dispute. It’s ridiculous that we have to guess what’s illegal.
“You also need a great trade group. They are worth more than their weight in gold, they are worth their weight in platinum. A fair number of our folks are on the ground in the markets we serve. Global trade compliance is not country-by-country anymore. More and more, the regulatory bodies are talking to each other. If an issue comes up in one nation, it comes up around the world. It is really critical that we extensively document where the components that go into our products come from.”
The meeting was hosted by Sherri’s friend Josh and his wife Jean[3], he a commodities broker, she a high school math teacher. Sherri and Josh had attended the same small Christian college. Before that, he had been an Indiana farm boy, and he still had the look: a beefy, boyish face with a grin that verged on gaping, mussed hair with perpetually sweaty bangs, a brown suit that flared in all the wrong places, and a general air of guilelessness. This cast in high relief his constant, ill-advised attempts to put on city airs: the firm handshake, the breezy small talk, the man-of-the-world asides.
Dream Night was not the first Amway event I had been to, but it was the most hallucinatory. It began with the triumphal entrance of the Amway Diamond couples, half-jogging through a gauntlet of high-fives to the theme from Rocky, as the audience whooped and hollered and twirled their napkins over their heads. When the standing ovation finally tapered off, the emcee offered a prayer thanking God for (a) the fact that we lived in a free enterprise system, where there were no government agents kicking down the doors of meetings like Dream Night and (b) His Blessed Son. As dinner wound down, the video screens displayed a picture of what the guy next to me was quick to identify as a $20,000 Rolex watch. (He went on to tell of a fellow he knew who had a $30,000 Rolex and who couldn’t tell the time for the glare of the gold and diamonds.)
In 2017, a Chandigarh court framed charges, under Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code and the Prize Chits and Money Circulation Scheme (Banning) Act, against two directors of Amway India, William Scot Pinckney and Prithvai Raj Bijlani. This was based on a cheating case filed by eight complainants in 2002, following which the Economic Offences Wing had filed chargesheet in 2012. A revision plea moved by the two Amway officials against the framed charges was dismissed in 2018.[129][130]
Whereas The Plan is supposed to provide a simple means to a desirable end, for Josh, Jean, and Sherri the process of recovery had become an end in itself. Josh and Jean would constantly tell me how World Wide’s books and advice had enriched their marriage and helped them to communicate with each other (the bolstering of marriage and family is a major theme in Amway). The Amway lore is also full of distributors, perhaps abused as children, who “couldn’t even look people in the eye” when they joined, but who were now confidently showing The Plan to all and sundry.
But it turns out to be so much more complicated. In 1979, the F.T.C., after investigating Amway, a multilevel marketing company with a vast product line, decided that the company’s business model passed muster — even though recruitment was at the heart of it — because it claimed to take certain steps that (among other things) supposedly showed that its recruits were selling the company’s products to real customers, not just to other recruits. Very quickly, other multilevel marketing companies adopted the “Amway rules” to stay on the right side of the F.T.C.

According to this article, “The way that you’re actually going to make residual income is by sponsoring people into a downline. Yes, this means that you are going to need to get really good at recruiting your friends and family into the business to become an active distributor just like you.” This means that if you’re looking to make it to the top of the Amway hierarchy, you’re going to need to create a large network of IBOs underneath you, and earn a commission off of each sale they make. In other words, creating recurring monthly income occurs not necessarily by selling Amway products, but by recruiting others to sell them for you. And this simply can’t be avoided, because in order to begin selling Amway products, you’ll have to sign up under an existing IBO, who will make money off each of your sales.
Let me share my experience. My son has completely been brainwashed by up line who has instructed him not to associate with his mother and father. His up line (the leader) gives the entire group instructions on what they have to do, when, how many meetings per weeks, hours of involvement. They also participate at conventions by the Diamond leaders who on the last day start preaching and have people go down forth to donate. Alan is a phony and fraud. Had no substance to his ramblings on stage then that pathetic sermon he entised sleep deprived individuals to donate. It doesn't stop there. My son and his wife have spent thousands of dollars in 2 years on Amway products and LTD products. They are instructed to do so. Sir, anyone who takes up for the cult like group should be ashamed. My son calls his Platinum leader his mentor whom he has ripped him apart through Identity Destruction. OMG...my son has a masters degree and this has ripped my heart completely out of my chest. I do not even know who he is anymore and I wish I could do something legally about this. You have no clue how they twist the bible, construe it into something they want the group to believe. Now my Christian son and daughter n law have stopped going to church and are worshipping the way the AMWAY LEADERS tell them to worship and their belief system. In the beginning I saw a drastic behaviour change, then a chill period. I even gave him my support, although against it, 100%. Helped their sales and reached out of o my friends who purchased. No more. I've not said anything hing about it to him but because my motherly instinct told me he was instructed to cut ties, that was confirmed today. His up line Joel should be sued for ripping our family apart. People like that are sinning and driven by money. The worship money and material things Of the world. There is only one God. I'm extremely upset and am just letting him go do it. He's under so much pressure stressed d out all the time. They are both coaches and thus side deal is killing them. The end
Scott spent the first hour explaining America’s economic crisis, which is rooted in a betrayal stretching back to the late nineteenth century. See, that’s when big corporations, with the help of government-run public education, first convinced Americans to abandon their entrepreneurial instincts and accept jobs. Before that, everyone was either a small-business owner or apprenticing to be one; afterwards, it was all about benefits packages. Emasculated by wage slavery, Americans had muddled along fairly well until, as stagflation rent the land in the 1970s, we realized in horror that mere wages were helpless against “exponentially expanding” costs.
Lengthy consumer lifetime as well as good retail profit. Amway actually has several of the best offline training out there. They've basically understood it because that's all they do. Because of this concentration, reps that stick around have the tendency to get excellent at constructing relationships with their consumers which prolongs the length of time a provided individual will certainly purchase the item. I directly know tons of people who are in their 60s and also 70s that have purchased Amway detergent for 30+ years and also advocate it.
Limitation on ownership was not a concept I was familiar with as a middle-class child – everything could be mine. I had never experienced a feeling of lack. I never wanted for anything I needed. I was never told we couldn’t afford something I asked for. While the thing I asked for might be denied me, money was never given as the reason. ‘Spoiled’ was a word I heard often from family and friends, and I was proud of it. I thought I deserved to be spoiled – I was fully ignorant of the negative connotations of the word. By the very fact of being me, I believed I deserved material things.

Studies of independent consumer watchdog agencies have shown that between 990 and 999 of 1000 participants in MLMs that use Amway-type pay plans in fact lose money.[115][116][citation needed] According to The Skeptic's Dictionary, "In the United States, the Federal Trade Commission requires Amway to label its products with the message that 54% of Amway recruits make nothing and the rest earn on average $65 a month."[117]
I like the convenience that they offer. They have a wide variety of high quality products and their shipping is always on time. The layout of the website makes it quite easy to find the products I need and the specific package sizes that I am looking for. It would be good it they allowed for bundling certain items together in order to get a discount. They do it to a certain extent, but it would be great if they offer far more options and combinations. It was a clear, organized experience that made shopping quite enjoyable. Checking out was easy and the entire experience was hassle free.
Enter Jay Van Andel, Amway’s other cofounder. Jay had a 1929 Model A, which Rich had noticed both driving down his street and also parked outside his high school. ‘I thought a ride in this car would surely beat the bus, a streetcar, or walking,’ says Rich. The rest is as saccharine as you would expect: good American boys working hard to make their dreams come true – an adventure full of family values and sturdy bootstraps with which one can pull himself up. It begins with the heartwarming story of their first joint business venture, running a pilot school, then segues into a comedy-of-errors trip on a sailboat – a typical masculine coming-of-age experience rooted in good old-fashioned American values like cooperation, perseverance, and leadership.
On August 9, 2007, a group of Quixtar distributors, including founders of the TEAM training organization, filed a lawsuit seeking to enjoin Quixtar from enforcing its distributor contracts, including the non-competition and non-solicitation provisions. The plaintiffs alleged that the company knowingly operates as a pyramid scheme, and prevents its distributors from leaving the organization through the aforementioned provisions.
The team that finishes first in the coaches' poll is awarded with the AFCA National Championship Trophy—from its inception through 2014, the winner of the BCS National Championship Game and its precursors was contractually named the #1 team on the Coaches Poll, and awarded the trophy in a post-game presentation. With the replacement of the BCS by the College Football Playoff in 2014, the trophy will still be awarded, but in a separate ceremony some time following the College Football Playoff National Championship (which chose to award its own trophy), and the Coaches' Poll is no longer obligated to name the winner of the game as its post-season #1.[4]

In 1983, Rich DeVos, one of Amway's founders, made recordings which, among other things, communicated his displeasure with several issues regarding some of the high ranking distributors/IBOs. These recordings are entitled "Directly Speaking"[45][46] and were addressed to Direct Distributors (now called Platinums), who are considered leaders with various responsibilities for their downline group. In January 1983 Rich DeVos announced that Amway would pay Business Volume (BV) on Amway produced tapes. He expressed concern about the level of income from the sale of Business Support Materials (BSM; tapes, CDs, books, and business conferences/functions) compared to the income the high level distributors were making from Amway products. He stated his legal team was concerned if the tool income exceeded 10% of their Amway income, and stated that BV payouts on tapes can never exceed 20%[47] of the distributor's total Business Volume.
The people who join Amway do so for many different reasons, including working part time to make a little extra money to help support their families or to achieve a specific financial goal. They come from a variety of circumstances and have just as many motivations. While the specifics of the IBO stories may vary, hard work, determination and a devotion to giving back to the community are common themes.
But there were some interesting results that threatened to shake up the rankings, none more so than Clemson's narrow 28-26 win over Texas A&M. The Aggies had their chances to pull even late in the fourth quarter. However, Quartney Davis fumbled into the end zone for a touchback after being tackled just before the goal line, and Texas A&M couldn't convert a potential game-tying two-point conversion in the dying moments. 
I can promise you will lose friends and lovers. If that's worth it to you then go forth, but be aware that for the participant (or victim) in this, your loss of friendships will sometimes be invisible, and occasionally worth much more than you ever thought. It's an honest decision - you shouldn't be friends with someone who treats you this way. Every single person who has fallen into this trap I have seen lose friends in the long run, even if we tried to see past it. It's a black mark of a terrible person. When someone tells you who they are, you should listen to them.
Outside the Capitol, state police donned riot gear while officers on horseback pushed protesters away from the building. Loudspeakers blared Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down,” and as the wind picked up, four 20-foot-tall inflatable rat balloons skittered from side to side. Each rat represented one of the key players protesters blamed for right-to-work’s hasty adoption: the governor, the House speaker, the Senate majority leader, and—the only unelected member of the rat pack—Dick DeVos.
What I can say about Amway is this. It has been around since 1959, is the only debt-free private company who helps people to have the freedom they want in their lives. YES, ofcourse you have to work for it. If you don't, you don't deserve the benefits it has. God has put us on this earth for a purpose. I haven't found any better option for helping people get their dreams in life and help others to do the same. It's the uneducated and unsuccessful people who have tried to give Amway a bad reputation, but anybody with a brain and common sense know that it's is truly the best, bar none, opportunity to secure your future and others. If it wasn't, it wouldn't be around after all these years and growing in leaps and bounds. Also, this business is not just about the income and lifestyle you can reach. It's about he integrity and the family we have made and have the pleasure of being around.

The Products are Expensive; well personally, I think they are a bit overpriced, which obviously is understandable because they have to pay you and your down line. However, it is a struggle to sell a bottle of $80 vitamin pills when there are other products with the same quality for a lot less. We are not exactly living in the old days anymore and people are cautious now when it comes to spending, meaning you will have to work double time to sell products at a higher price.
Outside the Capitol, state police donned riot gear while officers on horseback pushed protesters away from the building. Loudspeakers blared Tom Petty’s “I Won’t Back Down,” and as the wind picked up, four 20-foot-tall inflatable rat balloons skittered from side to side. Each rat represented one of the key players protesters blamed for right-to-work’s hasty adoption: the governor, the House speaker, the Senate majority leader, and—the only unelected member of the rat pack—Dick DeVos.
Multi-level market (MLM) or network marketing is an American institution. Companies like Amway, Tupperware, Herbalife, Avon, Mary Kay and The Pampered Chef support huge networks of distributors and recruits who sell every type of product from dietary supplements to kitchenware to beauty products. Salespeople are called independent business owners (IBO) and generally work from their homes.
The Dream is “sort of about pyramid schemes,” as host Jane Marie says at the beginning of the new podcast series, but it takes a moment to figure out just what that means. In the beginning of the first episode, which you can listen to exclusively here, Marie dives into a classic pyramid scheme of the 70s and 80s, the “airplane game,” a trend that became so prevalent among a certain subset in New York and South Florida that The New York Times caught on, calling it “a high-stakes chain letter.”
It may come as a surprise to Jessica and Richard, but 50% of all people are below average. IBOs are successful only if they exploit those that are feeble minded enough to buy Amway's crappy products: i.e cleaning products loaded up with salt. No ethical person would consider doing this. If the average IBO income is only about $200 and the median a lot less ~$30, then the scam is obvious! Perhaps Richard and Jessica always load up on Lotto tickets because the potential return is huge. Richard loves to focus on the good stuff and gets blinded by the false hope. Don't be a sucker, MLM is a scam.
Tracey Eaton, former pro football player and Amway Independent Business Owner, talks with former Louisiana State University Head Coach and national champion Les Miles in “Overcoming Adversity.” Miles' time in Baton Rouge was marked by adversity brought on by Hurricane Katrina. He credits a strong leadership structure and the importance of attitude, integrity and character with getting everyone through this challenging time. Watch Now

About 20 of us showed up and this guy was basically reading the same “save money” script as the guy from 2-3 months earlier. The old guy was from WakeUp now while this new guy was promoting Amway. Unfortunately for this new guy, he found me a few months too late. We sat through the guy’s speech but I told everyone not to join because it was a pyramid scheme. Most listened, some did not. None of them were able to make any profits before they eventually quit!
Methodology: “Source Euromonitor International Limited; Claim verification based on Euromonitor research and methodology for Amway Corporation conducted from January through February 2018. Euromonitor defined “satisfaction guarantee” as any product that has the word “guarantee” or “guaranteed” on the label, or is publicly backed by a guarantee policy by the direct seller on their website or through publicly-available collateral material or product catalogue. Promise of “money back” is not required, nor need it adhere to a specific time frame (e.g. “90 day guarantee”). In 2018, all Amway products are covered by a company-wide satisfaction guarantee, and Amway has greater sales than all other direct sellers. To the extent permissible, Euromonitor does not accept or assume responsibility to any third party in respect of this claim.
A key aspect of the suit is the charge that Amway misleads consumers with false income claims and promises for its “business opportunity.” Pyramid Scheme Alert’s analysis of Amway payouts to distributors shows that more than 99% of all who sign up never earn a profit. When actual costs are factored, including the related “tools” business, some estimates put the loss rates at 99.9%. This 99% loss figure correlates with tax data gathered as early as the 1980s when the state of Wisconsin prosecuted Amway. It was also verified by data gained by federal regulators in England who sued to shut down Amway in that country just several years ago.
The people who join Amway do so for many different reasons, including working part time to make a little extra money to help support their families or to achieve a specific financial goal. They come from a variety of circumstances and have just as many motivations. While the specifics of the IBO stories may vary, hard work, determination and a devotion to giving back to the community are common themes.
This collective approach is how the family runs their home lives, too. The DeVoses’ myriad properties are managed through a single private company, RDV Corporation, which both manages the family’s investments and operates as a home office, paying the family’s employees, maintaining the DeVoses’ residences and assuring them as frictionless a life as possible. (The duties outlined by one recent property-manager job with RDV Corporation include “ensur[ing] doors are well-oiled to avoid squeaking” and that “broken toys [are] repaired or disposed of.”)
[11]At the top, the multi-multi’s seem to attain a Zen of conspicuous consumption. Brad Duncan, brother of the great Double Diamond Greg Duncan, described seeing a dusty Rolls Royce among the many cars in the garage of his upline mentor, Ron Puryear; when he asked what he paid for it, Ron answered, “I don’t know. Whatever the sticker price was.” Brad took him to task for this, until Ron lectured: “That dealership is somebody’s livelihood—somebody with a family. I’m not so hard up that I need to haggle the food out of a child’s mouth.” Brad was chastened, realizing that only small minds pay attention to sticker prices.
"The worst thing that happened was the 'list.' My parents are both members of a nonreligious spiritual organization, and they volunteered to keep the other members up to speed regarding upcoming events and meetings. So, they had an extensive list, with hundreds of names and phone numbers. I had asked my mother for that list, and she understandably said no. A while later, having exhausted my personal list, I went behind her back, made a copy of her list, and started cold calling them. When my mother found out, she was furious. This led to a huge fight, and soon after I left home and went to live with my grandmother. More than a year passed before I spoke again with my parents or sisters."

Even so, among the DeVoses’ skeptics, there are those who strike a hopeful, if cautious, tone. “I think Mrs. DeVos could potentially be a really good secretary of education if she allowed parents and school districts to make policy at the local level,” says Daniel Quinn, executive director of the Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice, a nonprofit that receives a portion of its funding from the National Education Association. “But at the same time, I’m concerned.”
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