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University of Texas Chancellor Top Paid Higher Ed. Executive

Former University of Texas Chancellor William H. McRaven was the top paid chief executive across higher education systems within the U.S., according to data analyzed by The Chronicle of Higher Education.

The compensation packages of 1,400 chief executives at more than 600 private colleges from 2008 through 2016, and nearly 250 public universities and systems from 2010 through 2018 was examined. The final figures included base pay, bonuses, and other pay.

McRaven received an annual package of $2.57 million, which includes $600,413 in base pay, $678,985 in bonus pay and $1,293,386 in other pay.

Michael K. Young, the president of Texas A&M University, followed McRaven on the list, receiving the second highest package among college executives in the nation. In 2018, Young received an annual package of $1.89 million.

Eric J. Barron, Pennsylvania State University president, was the third highest paid college president. He was paid $1.83 million by the university in 2018.

Most of the individuals among the top ten highest paid executives were white except for Renu Khator from the University of Houston who was ranked fifth with  an annual package of $1.4 million, and Michael V. Drake who stood tenth with an annual $1.2 million salary.

The list also reveals that the gender pay gap for female presidents within the realm of higher education is still glaring. Only two female presidents were ranked among the top twenty executives who earned more than $1 million a year.

Last year, the Eos Foundation’s report “Women’s Power Gap in Higher Education: Study and Rankings in Massachusetts” revealed that the state’s colleges and universities have no gender balance, with 32 percent of institutions never having a female president, 26 of them have less than 30 percent of women on their board, and 14 have none at all.

Another survey found that among full-time faculty members, the pay gap in the salaries between males and females is increasing. Over the last academic year, female faculty were paid 81.6 percent of the salaries of males. This has primarily been attributed to an unequal distribution of employment between men and women in terms of institution type and faculty rank.

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