Daniels to receive large raise as Purdue president

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Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels will receive a big pay raise when he leaves office in January and takes over as president of Purdue University, possibly earning more than five times as much salary.

A memorandum of understanding between Daniels and the university calls for a salary comparable to those earned by university presidents at peer institutions, as well as performance bonuses. Outgoing Purdue President France Cordova earns $465,000. Indiana University President Michael McRobbie earns $533,120, which IU spokesman Mark Land says put him roughly in the middle for pay among university presidents in the Big Ten.

Ohio State University President Gordon Gee is reported to be the highest paid university president, making nearly $2 million a year. That includes a base salary of $834,530, deferred annual compensation of $225,000, performance compensation of $143,179, a supplemental executive retirement plan of $616,635 and other employer retirement benefits of $100,500.

University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman earns $585,783 a year. Michigan State University President Lou Anna Simon earns $520,000 a year.

According to the state auditor's office, Daniels' annual salary is $95,000. With other compensation, he was paid nearly $108,000 last year.

Morris Levy, a biological sciences professor who just completed a term as University Senate chairman on June 1, says he has concerns about the 10-member board of trustees, eight of them appointed by Daniels, setting his salary.

"I believe the phrase 'conflict of interest or the appearance of conflict of interest' is the most accurate statement," he said.

Levy said faculty members will be watching closely to see what Daniels is paid, especially because he is expected to streamline costs at the university.

Levy said the university works to try to make everyone feel as though they are all on the same team.

"If we pay Mr. Daniels an extraordinary salary, it's going to be hard to make everyone feel that way under him," he said.

Daniels said last week he wanted the contract to be as performance-based as any in higher education.

"I think it just feels right to me to have a contract which incentivizes and rewards, or doesn't, a person in this job based on progress against important goals like the ones we talked about," he said.

The memorandum of understanding also specifies that Purdue will furnish and maintain a car for Daniels and provide a driver when needed. It also says it will provide him with a house and moving costs and will make contributions to his retirement plan and that he is eligible for benefits all Purdue employees receive. It also specifies that it will be a five-year contract.

Purdue spokesman Chris Sigurdson said there is no deadline for the two sides to reach a contract.

"Basically, they have until January. So there's quite a bit of time left," he said.

The memorandum of understanding had not yet been signed by board of trustees chairman Keith Krach. Sigurdson said that was simply a formality.

"There's nothing unresolved," he said.


  • Big Time Crook
    End of Message.
  • union dues
    I wonder how much his Union Dues are
  • Qualifications
    Just because you was a Governor doesn't mean you are qualified to be a University President. The Governor's cronies have appointed him to a position where a PhD is the standard and yet Governor Daniels lacks that requirement. To receive a positiona and now pay comprable to others whom have worked decades for that position and pay is ridiculous. For a man that wants to be a budget hawk, let's see if he can do the right thing and reject an offer that would have a base pay he IS NOT qualified to receive.
  • In line
    I agree with others that indicate Daniels could feather his nest more lucratively doing other things. His pay as govenor while alot more than mine shocked me that he was paid so little to be the head of a state. I would expect his pay to be commenserate with other university's except maybe Ohio State (which is wacked out over the top on anything they do, legal or not) The title of the article makes it sound like he's being paid exhorbantly (sp) when he's just saying pay me equal to what others are getting paid of same caliber and then judge me on results. As to providing housing all past presidents have had that and at least he isn't asking that they create a job for his spouse like the last president. As to appointing 8 of 10 trustees,I would think there would be more to the process than his saying I appoint you!!!
  • Give it Back
    Since the Governor has repeatedly complained about the high cost of college, I'd suggest that he give $300,000 back to the state legislature and ask that it be directed to student scholarships for Hoosiers. He would still be getting a raise even if he returned the $300,000. To Hoosier students in need, over a quarter of a million dollars could really help.
  • Hoosier & RG are Right!
    This "conflict of interest" and "feathering his own nest" garbage is just that -- garbage. Governor Daniels does not need the money. His wealth was well into eight figures when he became governor. His vision, leadership and demand for fiscal responsibility and accountability are precisely what are needed in higher ed today. It is likely these latter two elements that are alarming those in the education community and causing them to resort to baseless accusations. Their world is changing as an accelerating rate, and their sacred cow is about to be gored. Purdue is extremely fortunate to have Mitch as its next president. He will help create a transformative model for higher ed that others will seek to emulate, while taking Purdue to new levels of preeminence. Go Mitch. Go Boilers.
  • Amen "Hoosier"
    Dear Hoosier, You are absolutely spot-on! It's very refreshing to see someone (especially an archrival!)get past their own pettiness and jealous self-pity to recognize this for what it truly is... a great leader chosen to lead a great university! Yeah Purdue! (and IU too!)...
    • 5 Year Contract & Age Restriction
      Given Daniels' age, he would really only be allowed to serve 2 years without approval from the state to serve after the mandatory retirement age of 65.
    • Why all the negative comments
      The Purdue Family should be thrilled with the hiring of Daniels. He could "feather his nest" in many other ways, but instead has elected to continue to serve the citizens of Indiana in a capacity where he can make a meaningful difference. Do you know what kind of pay cut/personal sacrifice the man has already made by taking a $95K salary as governor the past 8 years? He definitely didn't take the Purdue job for the money. As an IU alum, I'm envious, and congratulate Purdue on an awesome hire.
    • Term Limits
      Well this is one way to get around term limits and feathering your nest.
    • Who Works For Who Here?
      So let me get this straight. The Board of trustees boss is hired to work for them with unlimited employment terms and compensation? How do I get this job?
    • Nothing is unresolved?
      Compensation is an open question. The term of contract which violates Purdue's long standing mandatory retirement age is still pending.(That is why the current Purdue president is leaving) 8 of 10 Purdue Trustees were appointed by Governor Mitch Daniels creating a conflict of interest specifically prohibited by the organizations bylaws. The Governor seems to be dictating his own employment performance metrics, something any corporate governance expert would tell you is the sole responsibility of the Purdue Board of Trustees, which are beholden to set job expectations, oversee job performance, and hold the Purdue President accountable. Corporate governance, ethics, and conflicts of interest are completely out of whack in this situation.
    • Tuition and tax $$$
      Well its nice to see that our taxes, tuition and yes, even that annoying person who calls from the alumni office during dinner is directing the funds.

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