Richard Woolsey is a former member of the NID and the United States representative to the International Oversight Advisory. Since 2008 he is the operational leader of the Atlantis Expedition.


Not much is known about his past life. What is known is that he was married to someone and had a pet Yorkie, a small breed of dog. He said that he loved the dog, but that his wife got the dog in his divorce. He regretted being unable to say goodbye to his dog, which he never saw again. He also had a father, who was suffering from Alzheimer's. (SGA: "Broken Ties", "The Shrine") He was also a Harvard Law Review, Chief Counsel of the United States Army Corps of Engineers, and an appellate advocate for Hartshorn and Slaughter, a prestigious litigation boutique firm in New York City. (SGA: "Inquisition")


He was assigned by Robert Kinsey to investigate SG-1. His investigations were adversarial and condemning of SG-1 and the SGC as a whole. However, upon learning of Kinsey's association with The Trust, Woolsey went to General Hammond to seek his help in implicating Kinsey, saying that while he disapproves of how Hammond runs the SGC, he always does what he believes to be right. (SG1: "Heroes, Part 2", "Inauguration")


Woolsey was later appointed the United States ambassador to the International Oversight Advisory. He was in charge of deciding the fate of Khalek, the "son" of Anubis. Instead of putting him in stasis, or killing him like the rest of the team did, he and the IOA felt it would be necessary to study him, as his evolutionary state are similar to the Priors of the Ori. However, Woolsey's actions cost the life of several SGC personnel. He came up to Dr. Jackson for his forgiveness, but he doesn't give it to him. (SG1: "Prototype")


Richard Woolsey

Woolsey on Atlantis.

When a pair of Wraith hive ships learned of the location of Earth, Woolsey was dispatched to Atlantis to review Elizabeth Weir's competence as leader of the Atlantis expedition. While there, he aggressively questioned each one of Dr. Weir's decisions, and made a poor impression on the expedition members (Lieutenant Colonel John Sheppard expressed a rather strong desire to assault Woolsey). However, Woolsey's report concluded that Weir was qualified to remain as leader of the expedition with him even altering it somewhat so it put her in an even better light. (SGA: "No Man's Land", "Misbegotten")

He later returned to Atlantis to negotiate with the newly returned Ancients. They forced the team to leave the city but allowed him to stay on as a liaison. The Ancients quickly grew tired of Woolsey, and recalled General Jack O'Neill to help. Woolsey was there when the Asurans captured Atlantis, but managed to escape into a damaged section of the city with General O'Neill while the Ancients were murdered. He remained hidden with O'Neill and worried that he was going to die due to his inexperience. He later remained behind whilst O'Neill went to drain a Jumper Bay of water for the Atlantis team's rescue, and when the Asurans arrived to capture them, Woolsey put up a surprisingly good fight - as indicated by the number of shell-casings strewn around the area in which he was captured - but was captured and later interrogated. Unlike O'Neill he was unable to resist the mind-probe interrogation, and the Asurans got the team's plan from his mind. Later, the team used him as part of their plan, knowing he would have his mind probed again and would be unable to resist. This part of the plan worked, and the Asurans were caught off-guard by the real plan and were destroyed. (SGA: "The Return")


After Jackson was turned into a Prior. He decided his fate, by taking him into stasis, to learn from his mistakes on Khalek. However, he still wanted that to happen, despite Jackson telling him and Stargate Command that he had a plan to wipe out the Ori, using the Sangraal through the Supergate to the Ori Galaxy. He came up to Jackson, informing him of his plans. However, Jackson overcame the effects of the Prior disruptor and beamed Woolsey down to Earth, while Jackson commandeered the Odyssey to complete his mission. (SG1: "The Shroud")

Later on, Woolsey returned to Atlantis to write a three-month review of Carter's command. He promised not to interfere this time, and admitted that his own personal review revealed that he could be overzealous with his job. He expressed distrust of the Wraith and attempted to take command of the base to force Sheppard to destroy the two Hive ships in orbit. Carter countermanded his order, and ultimately the two Hive ships destroyed each other. This experience caused Woolsey to realize that he was in the habit of including too much into his reports, and subsequently apologized to Carter, agreeing that he wouldn't report Carter's failure to fire Sheppard due to him acting upon a hunch. (SGA: "The Seer")


Atlantis patch
Commanders of the Atlantis expedition
Dr. Elizabeth Weir (2004-2007)

Colonel Samantha Carter (2007-2008)
Richard Woolsey (2008-Present)

Woolsey later took over command of the Atlantis expedition, replacing Carter, after an "exhaustive review" after her first year in command. (SGA: "Search and Rescue")

One of his first things he did was replace the table in the Atlantis conference room with a 12 foot long mahogany one. He went to Atlantis to do things by the book. However, during his first week on the job, he broke half a dozen basic safety protocols, just to save Jennifer Keller's life. He wondered if he was to remain commander. However, after learning Woolsey can also break the rules, Sheppard shook his hand, and welcomed him to the Pegasus galaxy. (SGA: "The Seed")

He later came under evaluation of his command by someone that was told if she got him fired, she'd get his command. Apparently at first he didn't like the idea of commanding Atlantis, but had come to enjoy it and wasn't going to give it up without a fight. Apparently they wanted to get rid of him as he no longer did things completely by the book. He also became friendly with Dr. Vanessa Conrad, a new member of the expedition that had arrived recently on the Apollo and had to make a decision whether or not to take the database of the seed carrier, which would doom the race that could be rebuilt from it, or transport it to another planet where it could rebuild its race. Ultimately he learned that Dr. Conrad was in fact a manifestation of the carrier's AI who wanted to evaluate the kind of man he was and then ask for help. She explained the history of the Sekkari race and pleaded with him to transport the carrier to another world as it was the Sekkari's last hope to rebuild. He ultimately decided to have it transported by the Apollo to a suitable world and as a thank you gift, the AI helped save his job.

Alternate realities

  • In an alternate reality in which Michael Kenmore succeeded in taking over the Pegasus Galaxy, he was stepped in as the leader of the Atlantis Expedition, after Carter killed herself in a Kamikaze run against Michael's fleet. He ordered all the resources the expedition has pulled back to protect Atlantis. (SGA: "The Last Man")

External links

Preceded by
Samantha Carter
Commander of the Atlantis expedition
Succeeded by
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