Richard is a longtime gay activist who joined the Gay Activists Alliance (GAA) in 1970. He served as president of that organization in 1972. In the mid-1970s he also held office in the Gay Alliance of Brooklyn and in the New York Mattachine Society.
He is a Board member of the Archivists Round Table of Metropolitan New York, a not-for-profit organization representing a diverse group of more than 330 professional archivists, librarians, and records managers in the New York metropolitan area.
He was a frequent contributor of photographs and articles to New York's Gay newspaper, and more occasionally to the Los Angeles Advocate. A former Catholic seminarian with the Congregation of the Passion (Passionists), he began a detailed cataloging of his photographs while still in the seminary.
After his involvement with GAA he spent five years in Bradford, Pennsylvania before returning to New York City and to the gay movement. He is the founding archivist of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center National History Archive. He is the Associate Archivist of the New York Philharmonic and is the volunteer archivist/historian of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center.