So big dog Ryan Brill ’10 over at Wesleying has raised an interesting question during these financially difficult times by comparing President Michael Roth‘s salary to those of presidents at some of our peer institutions. All in all, compared to the presidents of Williams, Amherst, Sarah Lawrence, Vassar, Oberlin, Middlebury and Brown, Roth’s $564,000 annual salary is the second highest. Brown’s Ruth Simmons comes in first at $636,000.
The debate in the Wesleying comments section has been lively and surprisingly civil, raising some interesting questions about Roth’s salary in relation to his predecessors and his colleagues. I dug around on guidestar.org, which provides the 990 tax forms for nonprofit organizations, in order to give this conversation a little more context:
In 2006, his final year at Wesleyan, President Doug Bennet earned $412,974. The next year, his first at Wes, Roth earned $564,007–a $150,00 salary hike.
The 2008 form lists the salaries for top officers and administrators. A glance:
Thomas Kannam, VP & Chief Investment Officer: $460, 610
Barbara Jan Wilson, VP President for University Relations: $260, 334
John Meerts, VP for Finance and Administration: $240, 060
Joseph Bruno, VP for Academic Affairs and Provost, $221,120
Peter Patton, Interim Dean of College: $221, 339
Justin Harmon, VP Public Affairs: $197, 244
Nancy Hargrave Meislahn, Dean of Admissions: $167,149
It should be noted that Tom Kannam and Justin Harmon no longer work at Wesleyan and that Peter Patton is no longer the Interim Dean of the College. The 2008 form does not list top faculty salaries, but the 2007 form does:
Jeanine Basinger, Chair of the Film Studies Department: $213,420
David Beveridge, University Professor of the Sciences and Mathematics: $186,830
Anne duCille, Professor of English and African American Studies: $181,880
Nathanael Greene, Professor of History: $181,500
Ruth Striegel-Moore, University Professor of the Social Sciences: $180,467
Anyhow, the most interesting fact for me is that the president’s salary was raised by $150,000 when Roth arrived in 2007. Do what you like with the rest.