BOT Approves Pay increase for University President

By Lisa Powers, Penn State

UNIVERSITY PARK – Penn State’s Board of Trustees has authorized a salary increase for University President Rodney A. Erickson from $515,000 to $600,000 per year, effective Nov. 1.

The performance-based increase, reviewed by the full board, was initiated on the one-year anniversary of Erickson being named president and is in line with the employment agreement between Erickson and the University that has been in place since November of 2011. Erickson’s contract is based solely on salary and a typical benefits package. He does not live in a University-owned house and there is no provision in his contract for any deferred compensation upon his retirement.

“President Erickson has done a tremendous job leading our University through a difficult year — one of the most difficult in the history of Penn State,” said Karen Peetz, chairman of the board. “It is imperative that we have a strong, effective leader to ensure our future excellence. Rod Erickson is that leader. His salary is in line with competitors and we are pleased to support his presidency.”

Erickson received an annual performance review from the board based on factors such as leadership, management of financial resources, planning and resource development. The new salary puts Erickson at about the 50th percentile of base salaries for presidents and chancellors of comparable research universities, according to a 2011 survey of presidential compensation commissioned by Penn State and the University of Pittsburgh.

The survey, which looked at 17 research universities (see list below), was conducted by the firm of PayGovernance (formerly Towers Perrin). Erickson’s previous presidential salary was below the 25th percentile of survey respondents.

Erickson, who has been with Penn State for more than three decades in various leadership positions, plans to retire by June 2014.

Institutions participating in the 2011 PayGovernance Compensation Survey follow:

Public Universities (12)

— Indiana University
— Pennsylvania State University
— Purdue University
— Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
— University of Illinois
— University of Iowa
— University of Michigan
— University of Minnesota
— University of North Carolina
— University of Pittsburgh
— University of Texas
— Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Private Universities (5)

— Carnegie Mellon University
— Cornell University
— Northwestern University
— Princeton University
— Syracuse University

 

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