Burton Richter is the Paul Pigott Professor in the Physical Sciences, Stanford University and Director Emeritus at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. His research has centered on experimental particle physics with high-energy electrons and electron-positron colliding beams. He began as a post doc at Stanford University in 1956, became a professor in 1967, and was Director of the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center from 1984 through 1999.

He is also a Nobel Laureate (Physics 1976) and specialized in elementary particle physics. His current work emphasizes science policy and energy supply issues, particularly nuclear energy.