Virginia “Ginger” Bowman Rich

President and Owner, Rich Equine Nutritional Consulting
Davis & Elkins College, Class of 1974
Virginia “Ginger” Bowman Rich Headshot

​​Very few 18 year olds know what they want to do for the rest of their lives. I was one of those students. I had career goals ranging from special education to veterinary medicine to archeology. At no time did I think of equine nutrition as a possibility.

Going to a small liberal arts college was a stepping-stone into life for me. Davis & Elkins College allowed me to test several areas of interest, form new ideas, and develop skills before I started “swimming.” It gave me a broad base of knowledge, ultimately making me more resilient and realistic in my decisions. 
For example, in my junior year, I thought that I wanted to be a veterinarian for the rest of my life. After two attempts at admission into veterinary school, I had to find another option— enter equine nutrition. The job market changes quickly, so it’s best to have a plan “A” and plans “B” and “C” in one’s career toolbox, and the mindset to handle change.
Davis & Elkins educates the whole person for life — not just a wedge of the mind in science and math for a few years. I learned to appreciate different cultures and religions, which served me in my career as I interacted with Japanese, Middle-Eastern, and Native American customers. In the line of equine nutrition, I have had to attend art exhibitions and operas, and curtsey/bow to dignitaries without feeling animosity or inferiority.
Personal happiness and acceptance do not just happen at a certain age. Learning who you are, enjoying where you are, and identifying non-career areas of interest start in a liberal arts college system and continue to grow in well rounded, happy people.

Dr. Virginia “Ginger” Bowman Rich is president and owner of Rich Equine Nutritional Consulting, a company that specializes in working with private breeding farms, boarding facilities, and horses in race training. The company also develops rations and feed formulas, both private label and branded for regional, national, and international commercial feed companies.
Her client list has included the queen of England, the ruling family of Dubai, the state breeding farm of Japan, and numerous CEOs of Fortune 500 companies and celebrities. Client horses have won the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness, and the Belmont in the United States, and the Derby and Royal Ascot in Europe, among other races. She was previously a member of the faculty at Colorado State University and helped develop the equine sciences program there.
After graduating cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in biology from Davis & Elkins College, she went on to earn a master’s degree in animal science (equine nutrition) and a PhD in animal science (equine nutrition), both from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg, Virginia.​