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College presidents’ salaries skyrocket

Associated Press • Aug 27, 2014 at 3:12 PM

The number of public college presidents earning over $1 million more than doubled in the 2012-2013 fiscal year from the year before, according to a new survey.

The Chronicle of Higher Education study found nine college presidents earned more than $1 million in total compensation in 2013, compared to just four in 2012.

Public college presidents first exceeded the $1 million total compensation mark in 2004, according to the survey.

Gordon Gee topped the list, earning $6.1 million as the head of Ohio State University. Gee resigned that post last year after making comments about Roman Catholics, the University of Notre Dame and Southeastern Conference schools. He is now president of West Virginia University.

The study took into account base salary, bonuses, retirement, severance and deferred pay — an incentive offered to presidents who stay in their positions for an agreedupon period of time.

Four of the college presidents on the top 10 list have retired. Two others have accepted positions at other universities.

The top earners in the fiscal year 2012-2013 were:

•Gordon Gee, president of the West Virginia University

Gee’s compensation total is based on payments he received at the Ohio State University, from which he resigned in June 2013 after six years as president. Gee earned $6.1 million in 2013, which includes $3.3 million in deferred pay and $1.55 million in retirement and severance pay.

•Bowen Loftin, president of Texas A&M University at College Station

Loftin earned $1.6 million, and resigned from his position in January after three years. He now serves as chancellor of the University of Missouri. Loftin’s $425,000 base salary did not change from 2012 to 2013, however in 2013 Loftin was paid $950,000 in severance and retirement pay.

•Hamid Shirvani, president of North Dakota University system

Shirvani earned about $1.3 million in 2013. He retired in June 2013, after less than a year in his position overseeing the 11-campus system. He was paid $962,095 in severance and retirement pay — more than double his $349,000 base salary.

•Renu Khator, University of Houston main campus

Khator earned about $1.26 million in 2013. She has served in the position since 2008. Almost 45 percent of Khator’s total compensation comes from bonus pay and deferred pay on top of her $700,000 base salary.

•Sally Mason, University of Iowa

Mason earned about $1.14 million in 2013, and has served in her position since 2007. More than half of her total compensation is made up of deferred pay on top of her $493,272 base salary.

•Michael McRobbie, Indiana University at Bloomington

McRobbie earned approximately $1.1 million in 2013, and has served as the university’s president since 2007. McRobbie earned $567,076 in deferred pay, bonuses and other benefits, and $544,848 in base pay.

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