Born in Maesteg in Wales, Richards was educated at the town Grammar School and later at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. Well known for her contribution to broadcasting, her career began with BBC Wales as a broadcast journalist in 1976 and later as a reporter and producer for HTV Wales in the current affairs department in 1983, including the Welsh language current affairs series Y Byd ar Bedwar. She rose to become managing director of HTV Wales in 1997, before the company was taken over by United News & Media.
Richards rejoined BBC Wales as a Controller in February 2000 and retired in February 2011. It was revealed as part of the BBC's open policy in November 2009, that Richards salary per annum to August 2009 was £185,000, with total remuneration of £192,800. She was responsible for bringing series such as Doctor Who, Torchwood, Merlin, The Sarah Jane Adventures, Sherlock and Upstairs Downstairs to global TV screens.
Richards was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the New Year Honours 2010 for her services to broadcasting. In the same year she was also appointed to the board of the Welsh National Opera. In addition, she was awarded a BAFTA in 2015 for Outstanding Contribution to Television.
- "Menna Richards". BBC Wales. Archived from the original on 7 April 2005. Retrieved 11 October 2009.
- "Broadcaster Hannan dies aged 68". BBC Wales. 11 October 2009. Retrieved 11 October 2009.
- "No. 59282". The London Gazette (Supplement). 31 December 2009. p. 11.
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