Monday, September 23, 2013

Another Word on Executive Compensation

The Chronicle of Philanthrophy is reporting that acoording to the Chronicle's annual compensation survery, chief executives of the nation's biggest charities and foundations received a median salary increase of 3.1 percent in 2012.  The report contains some interesting facts:

  • The median compensation in 2012 for CEOs at all organizations was $417,989. It was higher—$497,513—at operating and private foundations.
  • Seven nonprofits paid their chief executives more than $1-million last year, as did 27 groups that provided 2011 figures. That’s a larger number than the 23 executives who made $1-million or more in last year’s study.
  • Twenty-two groups in 2012 reported that someone other than the CEO—typically the chief investment officer—made more money than the chief executive.
  • Only two women cracked the top 20 of the highest-paid executives in 2012: Donna Shalala, who received $869,520 as president of the University of Miami, and Lori Slutsky, who received $762,824 as chief executive of the New York Community Trust.

I was curious as to whether these figures were excessive.  Hence, I called the Executive Director of a small nonprofit operating in Waldorf, Maryland, to ask her about it.  She found the 3.1 percent raise to be reasonable, and educated me about the fact that executive compensation at nonprofits is related to the size of each organization's budget.  While her own compensation is nowehere close to that earned by Shalalal and Slutsky, she was quite satisifed with her compensation and was rather pleased that she was helping people. 

I guess she reminds me of Kyle Zimmer, "head of First Book, a Washington group that last year raised $101-million from private sources. She makes $180,000 and says that when her board members tell her they have done studies showing she is underpaid compared with other groups of that size in metropolitan areas, she tells them she doesn’t want an increase."  Now isn't that nice? 

What is your take on executive compenastion for heads of nonprofits?  



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