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Report: BU’s Brown Receives Highest Pay Of Mass. College Presidents

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Boston University's Robert Brown is the best-paid college president in Massachusetts, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education.

The publication reports Brown's total compensation for 2014 at $1.2 million. Brown's base pay is reported at $856,182. The Chronicle reports Brown's "other pay" at $106,098, and non-taxable compensation, such as benefits, at $256,589.

Boston University President Robert Brown, right, in a 2010 file photo (Josh Reynolds/AP)
Boston University President Robert Brown, right, in a 2010 file photo (Josh Reynolds/AP)

BU noted in a statement that the total includes the value of Brown's university residence. BU requires him to live there, the statement added, and counts the value of the whole property, not just his living quarters as it said some other institutions do.

"Boston University’s national and international reputation as a private research institution continues its upward trajectory under President Bob Brown’s more than decade-long leadership," the statement said. "His base compensation increased just 3 percent over the previous year, and his total compensation is based on a robust competitive analysis of pay for leaders at peer institutions, and his meeting and exceeding performance benchmarks."

Brown's pay is dwarfed by that of the best-paid college president in the country, Wilmington University's Jack P. Varsalona: $5.4 million. And Brown's 3 percent increase is below the national average of 8.6 percent, according to the Chronicle report.

In Massachusetts, Brown is followed by Northeastern University's Joseph Aoun, at $1 million; Harvard University's Drew Gilpin Faust, at $969,830; the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's L. Rafael Reif, at $954,830,  and Brandeis University's Frederick Lawrence, at $937,752.

Lawrence resigned last year. This year, Brandeis hired Ronald Liebowitz, formerly president of Middlebury College.

After Lawrence, the best-paid Massachusetts college presidents were Tufts University's Anthony Monaco, at $828,395, Emerson College's Lee Pelton, at $810,920, and Bentley University's Gloria Larson, at $714,537.

The best-paid public college president in Massachusetts was the University of Massachusetts's Robert Caret, who was paid $702,818.

Caret resigned in 2015 to head the University of Maryland. He was succeeded by Marty Meehan, who made $769,500 in his first year as president.

The Chronicle’s most recent data for presidents of private universities is from 2014; for public ones, it is for 2015.

This segment aired on December 5, 2016. The audio for this segment is not available.

Fred Thys Twitter Reporter
Fred Thys reports on politics and higher education for WBUR.

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