Richard Campagna | Teachers College Columbia University

Skip to content Skip to main navigation
News & Events Header

Teachers College Newsroom

Skip to content Skip to content

Richard Campagna

Richard Campagna is a modern-day Renaissance man. An attorney and psychological counselor who speaks four languages fluently, many also recognize him from his bid for the U.S. Vice-Presidency in the 2004 election. At TC, Richard bridged his corporate experience with his commitment to civic responsibility and desire to positively impact the world he has traveled so extensively. “The [TC] program in counseling psychology seemed to be the right discipline; it gave me exactly what I was looking for.”

Richard Campagna is a modern-day Renaissance man.  An attorney and psychological counselor who speaks four languages fluently, many also recognize him from his bid for the U.S. Vice-Presidency in the 2004 election.  At TC, Richard bridged his corporate experience with his commitment to civic responsibility and desire to positively impact the world he has traveled so extensively.  "The [TC] program in counseling psychology seemed to be the right discipline; it gave me exactly what I was looking for."  A born and bred New Yorker, Richard pursued undergraduate studies at Brown University where he majored in political science.  After completing his degree, he enrolled at both St. John's University School of Law and New York University for a master's in Latin American Studies.  "It was really an ideal combination of degrees," Richard says.  Although his father advised him to focus solely on his law program, Richard believed that studying Spanish, French, and Portuguese was a necessary means to an end for his career pursuits.  His thinking paid off when he turned out to be one of very few multi-lingual attorneys graduating in the mid-1970s.  "It was a little unorthodox at the time, but it turned out to be the best decision."  His stick-to-itiveness poised Richard for a career in international law that spanned the globe.

For the next decade, he practiced in Caracas, Venezuela and Paris, France with companies like Ford and Schlumberger, Ltd.  In the roles of Latin American counsel and international counsel for the latter, he oversaw legal operations in approximately 190 countries.  With the restructuring of many nations in recent years, Richard laughs, "I've probably been to more countries in the world than there are countries today."  Along the way he picked up his fourth language, Papiamento, a Spanish-Portuguese-Dutch-English dialect spoke in the Netherlands Antilles.  He and his wife eventually returned to the States where Richard served as general counsel for Fairchild Camera and Instruments in Mountain View, California before they headed east to New York. 

"I wanted to return to New York City and try something a little more independent," he remembers.  He and his wife, also an attorney, started their own international legal consulting firm in the early-1990s, and Richard also wrote and published travel books during this time.  But the corporate world, he says, "really started to be a grind.  I wanted to broaden my approach and do something more humanistic."  Seeking a graduate program that offered exposure to teaching, counseling, forensic psychology, and cultural advisement, the counseling psychology program at TC fit the bill.  He completed his M.A. in one year.  "I was very happy at TC," he says.  "It was a really wonderful opportunity to work, study, and wade in humanistic studies.  Its philosophical approach was every bit in accordance with my own; maybe 10 percent more."  After moving to Iowa City for what Richard describes as "a heartland experience," he completed doctoral coursework at the University of Iowa.  He is a consultant in a range of fields, including psychological counseling, legal advisement, teaching, interpretation, and stress management consulting.

Wishing to "mesh" his personal, self-described "optimistic and existential" life philosophy with his political affiliation, Richard found a political home with the Libertarian Party and was the running mate of the gubernatorial candidate in Iowa's 2002 election.  The experience prompted him to run for the seat of U.S. Vice-President in 2004.  "I wanted to run [as a candidate for the first time in U.S. history] telling it as intellectually honest as I could; no nothing than trying to reach out to people the way I want to be talked to myself," and Richard says he learned this can indeed be accomplished. 

Richard also participates on the College's Alumni Council.  He saw a request for individuals to join the TC Alumni Council as a way "to give representation for people based outside of New York City," and says, "I wanted to make a contribution."  He is currently serving the second year of his first term, working with the Council's international outreach committee.  "I'm very, very impressed with what the College has done.  Arthur Levine and all of the people I've worked with have been a pleasure."  Those relationships as well as his own schooling experience here keep him linked to the College and its ongoing mission.  Thinking about what the future holds, Richard's opinion is as positive as his general outlook on life.  "I only see good things for TC."  

Published Monday, Mar. 7, 2005

Richard Campagna

Richard Campagna is a modern-day Renaissance man.  An attorney and psychological counselor who speaks four languages fluently, many also recognize him from his bid for the U.S. Vice-Presidency in the 2004 election.  At TC, Richard bridged his corporate experience with his commitment to civic responsibility and desire to positively impact the world he has traveled so extensively.  "The [TC] program in counseling psychology seemed to be the right discipline; it gave me exactly what I was looking for."  A born and bred New Yorker, Richard pursued undergraduate studies at Brown University where he majored in political science.  After completing his degree, he enrolled at both St. John's University School of Law and New York University for a master's in Latin American Studies.  "It was really an ideal combination of degrees," Richard says.  Although his father advised him to focus solely on his law program, Richard believed that studying Spanish, French, and Portuguese was a necessary means to an end for his career pursuits.  His thinking paid off when he turned out to be one of very few multi-lingual attorneys graduating in the mid-1970s.  "It was a little unorthodox at the time, but it turned out to be the best decision."  His stick-to-itiveness poised Richard for a career in international law that spanned the globe.

For the next decade, he practiced in Caracas, Venezuela and Paris, France with companies like Ford and Schlumberger, Ltd.  In the roles of Latin American counsel and international counsel for the latter, he oversaw legal operations in approximately 190 countries.  With the restructuring of many nations in recent years, Richard laughs, "I've probably been to more countries in the world than there are countries today."  Along the way he picked up his fourth language, Papiamento, a Spanish-Portuguese-Dutch-English dialect spoke in the Netherlands Antilles.  He and his wife eventually returned to the States where Richard served as general counsel for Fairchild Camera and Instruments in Mountain View, California before they headed east to New York. 

"I wanted to return to New York City and try something a little more independent," he remembers.  He and his wife, also an attorney, started their own international legal consulting firm in the early-1990s, and Richard also wrote and published travel books during this time.  But the corporate world, he says, "really started to be a grind.  I wanted to broaden my approach and do something more humanistic."  Seeking a graduate program that offered exposure to teaching, counseling, forensic psychology, and cultural advisement, the counseling psychology program at TC fit the bill.  He completed his M.A. in one year.  "I was very happy at TC," he says.  "It was a really wonderful opportunity to work, study, and wade in humanistic studies.  Its philosophical approach was every bit in accordance with my own; maybe 10 percent more."  After moving to Iowa City for what Richard describes as "a heartland experience," he completed doctoral coursework at the University of Iowa.  He is a consultant in a range of fields, including psychological counseling, legal advisement, teaching, interpretation, and stress management consulting.

Wishing to "mesh" his personal, self-described "optimistic and existential" life philosophy with his political affiliation, Richard found a political home with the Libertarian Party and was the running mate of the gubernatorial candidate in Iowa's 2002 election.  The experience prompted him to run for the seat of U.S. Vice-President in 2004.  "I wanted to run [as a candidate for the first time in U.S. history] telling it as intellectually honest as I could; no nothing than trying to reach out to people the way I want to be talked to myself," and Richard says he learned this can indeed be accomplished. 

Richard also participates on the College's Alumni Council.  He saw a request for individuals to join the TC Alumni Council as a way "to give representation for people based outside of New York City," and says, "I wanted to make a contribution."  He is currently serving the second year of his first term, working with the Council's international outreach committee.  "I'm very, very impressed with what the College has done.  Arthur Levine and all of the people I've worked with have been a pleasure."  Those relationships as well as his own schooling experience here keep him linked to the College and its ongoing mission.  Thinking about what the future holds, Richard's opinion is as positive as his general outlook on life.  "I only see good things for TC."  

How This Gift Connects The Dots
 
Scholarships & Fellowships
 
Faculty & Programs
 
Campus & Technology
 
Financial Flexibility
 
Engage TC Alumni & Friends