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Richard, a Georgian by birth, moved to Juneau in 1971 to become a charter member of the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, retiring in 1994. Since 2004 he has worked as a seasonal naturalist guide for Gastineau Guild. Educated as an organic chemist, Richard did not become interested in creative writing much before his fortieth birthday. Since then he has taken courses at UAS and attended writing workshops. For almost thirty years he has met annually with a group of writers that graduated with him in 1959 from Emory-at-Oxford (now Oxford College of Emory University). He attributes much of his success to the advice and encouragement of this group. This group, called the Crawfordville writers because they often met in the little community of Crawfordville, Georgia, published a thin of heir prose and poetry in 2005.
In 2013 and again in 2015 he won first place in the Fairbanks Arts Association statewide poetry contest.