The Real Don Rich
Donald A. Rich CFP®, MS, MPAS SM
To many, Don is a professional influence here in the Flathead. He has made tremendous strides in his career and has made a name for himself and this business in the valley. But, aside from his 9-5, Don is a very easygoing guy that truly enjoys his time here in the Flathead with his wife Leslie, and their dog Miss Chrissy Lei.
As some may already know, Don enjoys learning about how wine is made and where it originated from. He appreciates the opportunity to travel to many vineyards to do tastings and relax. One of his favorite pastimes is sitting down with a great bottle of wine with friends and family.
Don attended the University of Arizona in Tucson to pursue his first Master’s degree in Athletic Sports Medicine. This was a very difficult program to be accepted into, as they only accepted 13 students a year. In 1979, Don accepted a position as an athletic trainer for the Olympic Training Center in Colorado. He enjoyed being around all the talented USA athletes, including the members of the hockey team that went on to beat the Russian Olympic Hockey Team in the 1980 Olympics. “GO USA!”
Don’s favorite sports growing up were football and basketball, and now he enjoys golfing in the summers here in the beautiful Flathead Valley and, of course, when they travel he loves practicing his golfing skills at the country’s golf courses. If he isn’t out on the golf course, you can usually find him out on his boat on Flathead Lake, either enjoying a book while sipping a glass of wine or taking his 3 grandsons out tubing for a fun, fast joy ride on the lake. Once the summer months have passed, during hunting season Don is out as much as he can elk hunting with his sons and other family members.
Some fun facts about the real Don; his hidden talent is organizing and making use of storage! A person he idolizes, in addition to his father, is John Wooden, the now deceased former basketball coach of UCLA. His all-time favorite TV show is Cheers. During high school, he enjoyed working on farms and ranches in Central Montana, especially stacking hay and branding calves. An embarrassing moment for him is when he and his wife Leslie were watching the movie “City Slickers,” there was a scene with the three City Slickers on horseback, and Billy Crystal turns to his 2 fellow city slicker friends and asks them. “What is the best day of your life?” At the end of the movie as he and his wife, Leslie were leaving the theatre she turned to him in a heartfelt moment and asked him the same thing, “What is the best day of your life?” Without hesitation, Don replied, “The day I shot my first elk!” He very quickly realized that was not the correct answer and has been paying for his response ever since! He quickly realized that she was assuming his best day had something to do with her.