The highest-paid college president in the United States is an African-American woman, according to a survey published by The Chronicle of Higher Education.
The national education tabloid reports that of the record 23 campus presidents who received more than $1 million in total compensation last year, Shirley Ann Jackson of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., was at the top, earning more than $1.6 million. The next runner up was David Sargent, of Suffolk University in Boston, who raked in a not-too-shabby $1.5 million – a third of his compensation was reported as deferred compensation last year and counted as salary this year.
A record one in four in the study of 419 colleges' mandatory IRS filings made at least $500,000.
Jackson, according to the Chronicle, took a voluntary pay cut this year to coincide with her institution’s broad budget cuts.
The national education newspaper says that the intensity of the job has much to do with the sizable compensation packages.
"Some people just don't want anything to do with the job because it keeps them up at night," said Chronicle editor Jeffrey Selingo. "In order to attract and retain good talent they're going to have to pay for it. They may take a little break now because of the economy, but these pieces are still in place."