Richard W. Riley

T: 864.373.2290
F: 864.373.2388
Poinsett Plaza, Suite 900
104 South Main Street
Greenville, SC 29601
101 Constitution Avenue, NW
Suite 900
Washington, D.C. 20001
T: 202.689.2811
F: 202.689.2841
Meridian, 17th Floor
1320 Main Street
Columbia, SC 29201
T: 803.799.2000
F: 803.256.7500

Richard W. Riley is a senior partner of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP and EducationCounsel LLC. A former U.S. Secretary of Education (1993-2001) and a former Governor of South Carolina (1979-87), Dick Riley, with full support of the Firm, remains an ambassador for improving education in the state, nation, and abroad.


  • Counsels clients on business, governance, financial matters, government processes and education law, policy, strategy and advocacy
  • Works with partners to develop strategy in complex business, legal and education matters

Previous Professional Experience

  • As U.S. Secretary of Education, helped launch initiatives to raise academic standards; improve instruction for the poor and disadvantaged; increase parental involvement in education; expand grants and loans to help more students attend college; and prepare young people in America for the world of work
  • As Governor of South Carolina, initiated the Education Improvement Act, the Employment Revitalization Act, the S.C. Research Authority, regional nuclear waste compacts, merit selection of public service commissioners, greater openness in government, and a constitutional amendment creating a state reserve fund
  • As S.C. State Legislator, advocated for Home Rule for local governments, judicial reform, legislative transparency, revision of the State Constitution, and modernization of state government