Richard Stanley met George Cukor in 1977 after writer Jamie Herlihy invited both to a dinner party, followed by a theater excursion. George, 78 years old at the time, needed a ride, so Richard happily performed driving duties. They shared lively conversation to and from Silver Lake on a balmy summer evening with the top down in Richard’s convertible. George invited Richard to what turned out to be one of the last of the notorious pool parties at his house above the Sunset Strip later that weekend. Though the pool parties waned, George enjoyed Richard’s conversation and company, which continued. George enjoyed travel, thanks to many worldwide invitations, and needed a lieutenant to handle logistics. Richard became George’s last lieutenant.
Before eventually settling into real estate sales, which he has done since the 1980s, Richard worked as a magazine editor, writer, and photographer; a voice-over talent agent at the then-largest commercial agency in Los Angeles; ground services for Air France; a legal assistant for a major Century City law firm; and sales, leasing, and financing for a multi-marque automobile dealership. Richard holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Albright College in Reading, Pennsylvania, and a master’s degree in fine art, photography, from the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York.