Richard Woolcott, AC is a retired Australian diplomat, author and commentator.
He held positions as Australia's ambassador to Indonesia and The Philippines, as well as High Commissioner to Malaysia, Ghana and Singapore. He was the Australian Ambassador to the United Nations from 1982 to 1988, and served as the President of the United Nations Security Council for Australia's term in November 1985. Woolcott also served as Secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), the most senior diplomatic posting in Australia, from 1988 to 1992. As DFAT Secretary, he was involved in the establishment of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. On 4 June 2008, Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced that Woolcott had been appointed as an envoy to conduct discussions to form a new Asian regional forum.
Since 1997, Richard Woolcott has been the Founding Director of the Asia Society AustralAsia Centre.
In 2003 Woolcott wrote a personal memoir entitled The Hot Seat: Reflections on Diplomacy from Stalin’s Death to the Bali Bombings, and he also wrote a book called Undiplomatic Activities in 2007.
For his services to diplomacy and international relations, he was made an Officer of the Order of Australia in 1985, and appointed a Companion of the Order in 1993.