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Only One Of Penn State’s 31 Highest-Earning Employees Is A Woman

Thanks to Pennsylvania’s Right to Know Law, it’s mandated that Penn State releases information like how much it pays its employees. This means the salaries of university administrators such as President Barron are public information.

With the release of Penn State’s 2016 Right to Know Law report, Penn Live compiled a list of the top 31 highest-paid employees at the university, including who they are, what they do, and what they made in the 2014-2015 fiscal year. The law requires the university to report the salaries of all officers and directors and then the top 25 earners who are not included in the first two categories. For Penn State, that number was 31 this year.

Below is the list:

  1. James Franklin, Head Football Coach: $1,282,187
  2. Robert Harbaugh, M.D., Department of Neurosurgery Chair: $909,744
  3. Kevin Black, M.D., Orthopaedics/Rehabilitation Chair: $791,278
  4. Peter Dillon, M.D., Department of Surgery Chair: $777,624
  5. John Myers, M.D., Pediatric Surgery: $764,783
  6. Jonas Sheehan, M.D., Neurosurgery: $696,848
  7. Alan Brechbil, Hershey Medical Center Executive Director: $692,719
  8. Walter Pae, M.D., Heart and Vascular Institute Physician: $647,727
  9. William Hennrikus, M.D., Orthopaedic Physician: $646,671
  10. Lawrence Sinoway, M.D, Heart and Vascular Institute Director: $643,256
  11. Douglas Armstrong, M.D., Orthopaedic Physician: $636,671
  12. A. Craig Hillemeier, Hershey Medical Center CEO: $605,248
  13. Graham Spanier, Former University President: $600,000
  14. Kevin Cockroft, M.D., Neurosurgery: $588,163
  15. Eric Barron, University President: $581,818
  16. Joseph Clark, M.D., Pediatric Surgeon: $581,258
  17. John Reid, M.D., Orthopaedic Physician: $578,633
  18. James McInerney, M.D., Neurosurgery: $576,837
  19. Carol Copeland, M.D., Orthopaedic Physician: $557,149
  20. David Quillen, M.D., Department of Ophthalmology Chair: $552,857
  21. Carlo de Luna, M.D., Neurosurgery: $551,297
  22. Timothy Reiter, M.D., Neurosurgery: $538,335
  23. Berend Mets, M.B., Department of Anesthesiology Chair: $536,089
  24. Stephen Dunham, Vice President and General Counsel: $533,979
  25. David Campbell, M.D., Heart and Vascular Institute Physician: $532,532
  26. John Repke, M.D., Maternal Fetal Medicine Chair: $531,128
  27. Walter Koltun, M.D., Colorectal Surgeon: $525,449
  28. Mario Gonzalez, M.D., Heart and Vascular Institute Physician: $518,273
  29. Nick Jones, Executive Vice President and Provost: $479,757
  30. Rodney Kirsch, Senior Vice President of Development: $436,326
  31. David Gray, Senior Vice President of Finance Treasury

It might not pop out at first glance through that list of names, but read it again with a finer-toothed comb and you might recognize that only one — one — of the top 31 people Penn State pays is a woman, Ms. Carol Copeland, M.D., an Orthopaedic Physician. Copeland makes the nineteenth most out of any Penn State employee.

Okay, disclaimer: I am so not the girl that gets worked up about women’s rights and equal pay, but the lack of female presence was glaringly obvious when I first scanned the list. It’s not to say that Penn State isn’t paying women what they deserve or that the wage gap in America isn’t ridiculous, blah blah blah…but it’s definitely not a good look for the university to say, “here’s the 25 non-administrators who make the most money, and there is exactly one lady on the list.” Of course, the university is by no means highlighting this — the information is mandated for report — instead I would bet Old Main is wishing there was more than one person on that list who experiences a menstrual cycle.

Also not evident from the above list of names is that it’s essentially 30 white people and James Franklin, who is the only person on the list who isn’t an administrator or a doctor. Penn Live presents the list as a slideshow including pictures of each individual, and flipping through just clicks you through white guy after white guy (unless the Aussie accent of Provost Jones is the diversity you’re going for).

So where is your tuition money going to? A bunch of white guys, a football coach, and doctors. Alright, doctors are good. But with female enrollment closer to 50 percent than 3 percent, I’d certainly like to see a few more women on that list.

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About the Author

Lexi Shimkonis

Lexi is an editor-turned-staff writer who can often be found at either Irving's or the Phyrst (with the chances she'll have her backpack being the same). Lexi is a senior hailing from Spring City, PA (kind of) and studying Civil Engineering. Please email questions and/or pleas for an Instagram caption to [email protected], or for a more intimate bond, follow her on Twitter @lexshimko.


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