President Clements salary increase approved
Published: Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Updated: Thursday, May 24, 2012 17:05
West Virginia’s Higher Education Policy Commission has unanimously approved a privately funded supplement for West Virginia University President Jim Clements’ salary, raising his annual compensation to $775,000.
Clements’ five-year contract allowed for additional compensation from private sources through the WVU Foundation,and the $125,000 supplement has been approved by the WVU Board of Governors and the Foundation Board.
The funds come from the WVU Foundation’s Milan Puskar Presidential Chair Endowment, which was set up by philanthropist Milan Puskar to "provide salary and benefit support to recruit or retain a ‘super star’ president."
"The members of the Foundation Board are enthusiastic about the progress being made at WVU under President Clements’ leadership, and are pleased to be in a position to support this presidency in this meaningful way," said Wayne King, president and CEO of WVU Foundation,in a press release about the compensation package.
The press release also said Clements’ compensation package brings his salary "more in line with mission-based and HEPC peers such as Penn State, Kentucky,Virginia Tech and Minnesota."
According to The Chronicle of Higher Education, in 2009-2010, President Graham Spanier of Penn State received 1,068.763 annually; President Lee Todd Jr. of the University of Kentucky had a salary of $972,106, Virginia Tech President Charles W. Steger had a salary of$738,603, and Robert H. Bruininks, President of the University of Minnesota Twin Cities, received $747,955.
"As we get set to embark on the public phase of our capital campaign, it’s imperative that we have a strong, effective University leader," King said. "It’s clear Jim Clements is that person."
King said external consulting about supplementing Clements’ salary received overwhelming positivity from WVU Foundation donors.
"We were told his presidency ranked among the highest evaluations the firm had ever received in its 30 years of doing this kind of work," he said.
In the press release, Foundation Board Chair Verl Purdy expressed support for the compensation package.
"For the past three years, we have enjoyed record-breaking donations at the WVU Foundation. These results were achieved because our alumni and friends believe in the greatness and the future of WVU under the dynamic leadership of Dr. Clements and his team," she said."There’s never been a better time to be a Mountaineer, thanks in large part to Jim Clements."
Last year, The WVU Foundation’s total assets stood at $1.1 billion. When President Clements joined the University in 2009, the Foundation’s assets stood at only $754 million. Between July 2010 and June 2011, the foundation received $96.3 million in cash, pledges and gifts – the largest in the Foundation’s 57-year history.
These gifts allowed the WVU Foundation to disburse $50.6 million on behalf of the University. Of the money distributed, $9.4 million went towards salaries and benefits of WVU employees and $12.4 million was used for various scholarships.
More than 25 percent of the money donated to the WVU Foundation came from University alumni and friends.
In the press release, Clements’ said he is "humbled by the support and confidence" shown by the Board of Governors, the WVU Foundation, and HEPC Boards.