Who’s Who in HQ: Administrative Officer Dr. Richard J. Wilk

Categories: Staff

Who's Who in HQ is an ongoing series that serves to highlight familiar faces in Chemistry Headquarters.

Administrative Officer Dr. Richard J. Wilk has been at MIT for fifteen years. In his role as the senior administrator, Rich manages all administrative functions of the Department of Chemistry, including the daily operations of Chemistry Headquarters. In addition to that, he provides support to the Department Head and Associate Department Heads, faculty, students and staff regarding finances, personnel, operations and other policy matters. In the inaugural Who’s Who in HQ article, Rich shares a taste of his Bucket List, some advice for his past self,  and the guest list to a truly epic dinner party, among other fun facts!

1. What was the last television show you binge watched?

2.  Who are three of your favorite fictional characters?
Indiana Jones, Batman, and Godzilla.

3.  What would be your last meal?
Dinner at Peter Luger steakhouse in Brooklyn, and a great bottle of wine.

4.  What is your favorite four-legged creature?
Any canine.

5.  Which two celebrities would you pick to be your parents?
George Lucas and Julia Roberts.

6.  What is the best vacation you’ve ever taken?
A trip to Bali.

7.  What are a few items on your bucket list?
Ride in a fixed wing glider over the Alps, celebrate New Years Eve in Sydney Harbor, dine in as many Three Star Michelin Restaurants as possible, snorkel in the South Pacific, and attend a Superbowl Game (hopefully with the Green Bay Packers!)

8.  What brings you the greatest joy?
Spending time with family.

9.  What apps can you not live without?
Netflix, Google Maps, and the Starbucks app.

10.  What’s one thing you wish you knew when you were younger?
Use time more effectively.

11.  Who is on the guest list for your ideal dinner party?
Neil Armstrong, J. K. Rowling, Richard Branson, Oprah Winfrey, Michael Jordan, Angelina Jolie, John Lennon, Albert Einstein, Tina Fey, Michael Jackson, Princess Diana, and Christopher Columbus.

12.  What will always make you laugh?
A Steve Carell movie.

13.  What is your go to karaoke song?
New York, New York.

14.  What was your first job, ever?
I was a bartender.

15.  What is your favorite place in the world?
New York City.

16.  What song instantly puts you in a good mood?
Don’t Worry, Be Happy.

17.  Do you have a secret talent?

18.  What are your top three favorite movies?
Star Wars, Ghostbusters, and Jaws.

19.  What superstition do you believe in?
I am not superstitious.

20.  If you could have any job in the world, other than working at MIT, what would it be?
That is a difficult question, as there are a few, but if I had to pick one it would be Director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.


Thank you so much, Rich, for all that you do for the Department of Chemistry on a daily basis!

Stay tuned for more Who’s Who in HQ in the months to come!