Professor William Graham Richards C.B.E., M.A., D.Phil, D.Sc, C.Chem, FRSC was born 1 October 1939 in Hoylake, Cheshire and was Head of Chemistry (1997-2006) at the University of Oxford. He is a Fellow of Brasenose College, Oxford and the author of 300 scientific articles and 15 books. He is a council member of the Royal Society of Chemistry and of The Royal Institution.
Graham Richards was educated at Birkenhead School where he won a scholarship to Brasenose College, Oxford. He applied computational techniques to solving quantum mechanical problems in theoretical chemistry at the Physical and Theoretical Chemistry Laboratory, Oxford and became was one of the pioneers in the field of computer-aided molecular design for industry, particularly in pharmaceuticals.
His work has been recognised by awards including the Mullard Award of The Royal Society, Lord Lloyd of Kilgerran Prize, the Italgas Prize and the 2004 Award of the American Chemical Society for Computers in Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research. He is a council member of the Royal Society of Chemistry and of the Royal Institution.
He was one of the co-founders (with Tony Marchington) of Oxford Molecular Ltd. which was worth £450 million at its peak but which was eventually sold for £70million. He also helped set up Isis Innovation, Oxford's technology transfer company that has brought around 60 spin-out companies into existence, generating tens of millions of pounds of income for the university.
He instigated a screensaver project which exploited idle time on over three million personal computers in over 200 countries to screen 3.5 billion compounds against protein targets. This led to the formation of the spin-out company Inhibox Ltd. where Professor Richards now conducts his research. He donated his shares in the company to a cancer research charity in 2002.  He is a non-executive director of IP Group plc.
His first wife, Jessamy, died in 1988. He is now married to Mary E. Phillips, director of research planning at University College London. He has two sons and three stepchildren.