It is with profound sadness that the world learned of Rick Beauchamp’s passing on Saturday, April 5. What a mind. What a wit. What a teacher. Rick wore so many hats in the dog game and always with such flair: acclaimed breeder, publisher, award-winning author, international judge, mentor, and a greatly admired columnist for Dogs in Review since the very first issue.
With every conversation, you went away learning something from Rick… but like the best teachers, it was always conveyed with a sense of wonder and fun, never preachy.
He was hugely interested in the rare breeds and was instrumental in helping the Bichon Frisé gain AKC recognition. Although his Beau Monde prefix was best known for Cocker Spaniels in the early days, he bred more than 100 Bichon champions to carry the Beau Monde name. When he prepared for an ARBA (American Rare Breeds Association) assignment in the 1980s and ‘90s, he sought out knowledgeable breeders to ask relevant questions. He always needed to “get it right.” Never was a non-AKC judging assignment considered of lesser importance to him. Rick was also an all-breed judge in the United Kennel Club.
His background in the entertainment industry served him well as publisher/editor of Kennel Review magazine, offering the fancy a glossy monthly publication in which to showcase the sport and its four-legged stars. It was during the Kennel Review years in the 1960s that Rick started the Winkie Achievement Awards. Kennel Review closed its doors in 1992, but in 2005, Dogs in Review revived the tradition of the Winkies with Rick at the helm, coordinating the gala through February 2014.
Rick was a prolific writer with scores of successful books to his credit, but Solving the Mysteries of Breed Type, first published in 2002, has become a modern-day classic, honored around the world.
Our sport has lost a giant; a dedicated judge and much-needed mentor. Dogs in Review has lost a respected colleague and a treasured friend.
Editor-in-Chief, Dogs in Review
Read Rick’s last column in Dogs in Review, from the March 2014 issue.