Bowman attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and began a career as a stage actor and radio singer in the '30s. Beginning with his debut in Internes Can't Take Money (1937), he spent seven years playing second leads, often as a playboy thanks to his suave, elegant style and dapper, handsome looks. Bowman hit his stride in the mid '40s, notably in Smash-Up (1947) opposite Susan Hayward. Never a major star, he began concentrating more on his stage work in the late '40s. He briefly starred in the TV series The Adventures of Ellery Queen (1950-51). After the mid '50s Bowman retired from the screen (except for a role in Youngblood Hawke in 1964), after which he went on to become the radio and TV consultant for the Republican Senatorial and Congressional Committee in Washington and later for Bethlehem Steel, coaching politicians and businessmen in speaking and on-camera techniques.