Richardson joined James Richardson & Sons, Limited in 1946, and was assigned to Richardson Terminals in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada, where he had worked the previous two summers. While at the Terminal, he gained valuable experience which would prove greatly beneficial to him throughout his career.
In 1954, Richardson became vice-president of the firm. At that time, he focused much of his attention on developing two companies: Marine Pipeline Construction of Canada and Patricia Transportation Company. Marine Pipeline built the first 42-inch pipeline and the first commercial natural gas pipeline north of the 60th Parallel, while Patricia Transportation Company played a significant role in opening up Northwestern Ontario and northern Manitoba.
In 1966, he was appointed president of James Richardson & Sons, Limited, a position he would hold for 27 years. He made an outstanding contribution to the development of the firm during his time in office, most notably the expansion of Pioneer Grain, the completion of Lombard Place which includes Richardson Centre and The Fairmont Winnipeg, and the growing of Richardson Securities of Canada into an international brokerage firm.
During the 1980s and '90s, many of Richardson’s greatest contributions involved the securities division of the company. In 1982, Richardson Securities of Canada merged with Greenshields Inc. to form Richardson Greenshields of Canada Limited. Greenshields was a prestigious firm with which the Richardsons already enjoyed a well-established business relationship. At the time, the combination produced the largest privately-owned Canadian investment dealer in terms of national and international presence.
In 1993, he was appointed chairman and managing director of James Richardson & Sons, Limited. He officially retired from the firm in 2000, although he remained honorary chairman and director emeritus until his passing. His availability to company personnel and business associates alike was exhibited by the fact that his office door was always open and by his unique habit of answering his own telephone, the company said.
Richardson was born in Winnipeg on Sept. 22, 1924, son of the late James and Muriel Richardson, brother to Kathleen and to the late Hon. James A. Richardson and the late Agnes M. Benidickson. He married Tannis Thorlakson, and they had four children and nine grandchildren. Richardson was educated at Grosvenor School, St. John’s Ravenscourt School and the University of Manitoba, from which he graduated with a bachelor’s of commerce degree in 1946.