Richard joined Wesfarmers in 1993, after working in various commercial roles at Tubemakers of Australia Limited. He held a number of commercial positions in Wesfarmers' Business Development department, including General Manager. In 1999 Richard was appointed Managing Director of Wesfarmers Dalgety Limited, which subsequently became Wesfarmers Landmark Limited, a position he retained until his appointment as Finance Director of Wesfarmers Limited in 2002. He was appointed Deputy Managing Director and Chief Financial Officer of Wesfarmers Limited in May 2004 and assumed the role of Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer in July 2005. Richard joined the Board of Wesfarmers Limited in 2002 and is a director of a number of Wesfarmers Group subsidiaries.
Outside of his Wesfarmers Group board commitments, Richard is Chairman of the Australian Football League Commission, and a director of the Business Council of Australia and of The University of Western Australia Business School Advisory Board. In February 2013, Richard was appointed Chairman of the Australian B20, the key business advisory body to the international economic forum which includes business leaders from all G20 economies. Richard was appointed a director of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Australia Board in March 2016, and Chairman of the Board in June 2016. He is also the Co-Chairman of the JDRF Australia Advisory Board and joined the Board of Woodside Petroleum Ltd in August 2017 as a non-executive director and Chairman-elect.
Richard holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree and has been awarded the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Commerce from The University of Western Australia. He completed the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School in 1998. He is a Fellow of AICD.
Richard was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2013 for distinguished service to business through executive roles and through the promotion of corporate sponsorship of the arts and Indigenous programs, and to the community.
As announced in February 2017, Richard will step down as Managing Director in November 2017 after more than twelve years in the role.