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Board of Trustees Approves Salary Increase of $85,000 More Per Year for Erickson

by on December 19, 2012 10:52 AM

Penn State President Rodney Erickson got a raise: The Penn State Board of Trustees approved a salary increase for him from $515,000 to $600,000 per year, which became effective Nov. 1. 

Announced via Penn State Live on Wednesday, Erickson's raise was performance-based and reviewed by all members of the board. Erickson's salary increase was enacted one year after he was appointed president – which occurred in the wake of former Penn State President Graham Spanier's stepping down from the position – and is in line with the employment agreement between Erickson and Penn State that has been in place since November 2011.

Erickson's contract is based solely on salary and a typical benefits package. He does not live in a university-owned house and there is no provision in his contract for any deferred compensation upon his retirement, according to Penn State officials. 

"President Erickson has done a tremendous job leading our University through a difficult year – one of the most difficult in the history of Penn State," said board chairwoman Karen Peetz. "It is imperative that we have a strong, effective leader to ensure our future excellence. Rod Erickson is that leader. His salary is in line with competitors and we are pleased to support his presidency."

According to Penn State Live, Erickson received an annual performance review from the board based on factors such as leadership, management of financial resources, planning and resource development. The new salary puts Erickson at about the 50th percentile of base salaries for presidents and chancellors of similar research universities, according to a 2011 survey of presidential compensation commissioned by Penn State and the University of Pittsburgh.

Erickson's previous presidential salary was below the 25th percentile of survey respondents.

Erickson, who has served Penn State for more than 30 years in various leadership positions, plans to retire by June 2014. The board has started the process of searching for a new president. 

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Laura Nichols is a StateCollege.com news reporter and @LC_Nichols on Twitter.
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