Richard Riddell is senior vice president and secretary to the Board of Trustees. He is a member of the executive leadership team and serves as senior advisor to the president and liaison between the university and the trustees.
Previously, Riddell served as special assistant to the provost, where he managed university-wide interdisciplinary programs, advised on the arts and humanities, and served as a member of a working group that assisted the provost in developing the university’s strategic plan.
Riddell joined the Duke faculty in 1992 and is the Mary D.B.T. and James H. Semans Professor of the Practice in Theater Studies. Before coming to Duke to lead the then Drama Program and later Department of Theater Studies, he was an administrator and faculty member at Harvard University (1987-1992) and at the University of California, San Diego (1978-1987). He is a professional lighting and scene designer, receiving the Tony Award in 1985 for excellence in lighting design (Big River). Riddell received his bachelor's degree from Knox College in Illinois, where he served as chair of the Board of Trustees and is an emeritus trustee, and his Ph.D. from Stanford University.