This week the Chicago Tribune Watchdog published an analysis to outrage the Illinois taxpayer:
CEO pay hikes raise eyebrows
Average raise in 2009-10 for CEOs of 18 nonprofits double that for private-industry workers
June 21, 2012By Matthew Walberg and Joe Mahr, Chicago Tribune reporters
During the height of the recession, employees at one of the area's biggest nonprofits were not supposed to get pay raises greater than 6 percent — but that didn't apply to the CEO. The board for the Community and Economic Development Association of Cook County gave CEO Robert Wharton a 10 percent raise in 2009, followed by a 15 percent raise in 2010, boosting his total compensation to $275,000 to run a nonprofit that gets more than 90 percent of its money from taxpayers.
What bothered me about the article is that it didn't compare non-profit CEOs raises and compensation to those of other CEOs-just workers. Of course, executives at the biggest Chicago area corporations receive annual compensation packages worth more than the entire operating budgets of the non-profits listed in the article. Last spring the Tribune ran an article http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-05-19/business/ct-biz-0520-ceo-pay--20120519_1_equilar-ceo-compensation-stock-and-option-awards identifying
the median pay for top executives in Chicagoland's 100 biggest companies as $5.3 million. Executives at the top saw their compensation more than double.
Certainly it's not a fair comparison to contrast compensation between Greg Brown of Motorola Solutions Inc. who received $29.3 million last year (up 113 percent from $13.7 million in 2010) and Robert Wharton of the Community and Economic Development Association of Cook County who received $275,107 in 2010 (a raise of 12.3%). It's also not fair to compare the pay of a nonprofit CEO to the pay of a private industry worker-as the latest Tribune article does.