Richard de Grijs obtained his PhD from the University of Groningen (Netherlands) in 1997, and held two postdoctoral positions (at the University of Virginia, USA, and the Institute of Astronomy, University of Cambridge, UK), before being appointed to a permanent post at the University of Sheffield (UK) in 2003. He joined the Kavli Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics at Peking University in September 2009 as a full professor, where he was promoted to Associate Director in 2012 (for 2 years). In March 2018, he joined Macquarie University in Sydney as Associate Dean (Global Engagement) at their Faculty of Science and Engineering, combined with an appointment as Professor of Astrophysics at the Department of Physics and Astronomy. Richard has been one of the scientific editors of The Astrophysical Journal (the leading professional journal in his field) since 2006 and took on the role of deputy Editor-in-Chief of The Astrophysical Journal Letters in September 2012. He was awarded the 2012 Selby Award for excellence in science by the Australian Academy of Science, as well as a 2013 Visiting Academy Professorship at Leiden University by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences.