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Gordon Gee to be Highest Paid College President in Ohio

Incoming Ohio
State University
president Gordon Gee will take a pay cut when he leaves Vanderbilt
University to assume the helm of
the nation’s largest university, but his $775,000 salary easily will make him
the highest paid college president in the state.

Gee, who made $1.1 million as chancellor at Vanderbilt, also
will get $225,000 a year in deferred compensation from Ohio
State bringing his total salary to
$1 million.

The next best-paid public college president, Cincinnati’s
Nancy Zimpher, gets $600,000 a year. Former
Case Western Reserve
University President Edward Hundert
made $603,000 at the private school in 2004-2005, the last year for which the
school’s numbers are available.

Rising economic tides are encouraging higher university
president salaries across the nation, said Claire Van Ummersen, vice president
of the Center for Effective Leadership at the American Council on Education.

Van Ummersen, a former president at Cleveland
State University,
said few people can juggle the complexities of the job, leading to a rising
demand for talented candidates.

“There are only a small number of individuals who are
prepared to undertake some of these very large institutions and lead them
forward,” she said.

The Chronicle of Higher Education reported last year that
the number of public college presidents receiving $500,000 salaries or more
doubled over the previous year.

Last year, David Roselle made about $980,000 as president at
the University of Delaware; Mary Sue Coleman, $742,000 at the University of
Michigan; and Mark Emmert, $752,700 at the University of Washington.

Gee’s $1.1 million salary at Vanderbilt made him the
highest-paid college president in the nation, according to the Chronicle of
Higher Education.

Ohio State
trustee Chairman Gil Cloyd said school officials knew that to lure Gee away
they would have to present a nearly comparable compensation package.

“We knew if we were going to get the top person, it
could very well take $800,000 to $1 million,” Cloyd said. “We believe
we’ve made a wonderful strategic investment for Ohio.”

Information from: Akron
Beacon Journal,

– Associated Press

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