Richard Speier is a member of the RAND Corporation's adjunct staff. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physics from Harvard College and a Ph.D. in Political Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. During 4 years of graduate study he focused on economic and strategic analysis, including work at the RAND Corporation and the Institute for Defense Analysis.
He then entered the Office of Management and Budget, where he helped reshape nuclear and space programs, and later the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, where he analyzed nuclear technologies that contribute to proliferation. He spent a year at the National War College co-authoring a prize-winning study, "The Bomb in Southwest Asia".
In 1982 he joined the Office of the Secretary of Defense to start the Office of Non- Proliferation Policy. For 10 years he helped design, negotiate, and implement the Missile Technology Control Regime. In recognition of his work on the international negotiations that led to the MTCR, the Secretary of Defense awarded him the Meritorious Civilian Service Medal. Speier is widely credited with being "the father of the MTCR." He later helped initiate the Defense Department’s Office of Counter-Proliferation Policy.
Speier now consults in the Washington, D.C. area. He has worked with both non-profit and for-profit organizations. His dozens of writings include a history of the negotiation of the MTCR, a study of nonproliferation sanctions, and articles on the implications of unmanned air vehicles, space launch vehicles, missile defense, and hypersonic missiles.