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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Univ adopts new compensation philosophy; Reinharz given $4.9m

Published: January 24, 2014
Section: Front Page, News

The board of trustees announced several changes to Brandeis’ controversial “executive compensation” policy Thursday, including the adoption of a more comprehensive “Statement of Compensation Philosophy.” The policy, which first came under scrutiny in the wake of a November Boston Globe article detailing the continued compensation of former Brandeis president Jehuda Reinharz, caused uproar from the Brandeis community in juxtaposition to rising tuition costs and Reinharz’ extremely lucrative current position as president of the Mandel Foundation. An alumni-generated petition against the policy gained over 1,600 signatures last fall.

The university also disclosed today that, in addition to the initial $600,000 of earnings reported on by The Globe, Reinharz was paid a total of $4.1 million in deferred compensation on Jan. 2. An additional $811,000 was paid due to untaken sabbatical time Reinharz accumulated over his 17 years as president.

New policies are designed to ensure that “students and alums are involved in setting compensation through the elected student and alum reps to the board of trustees,” said Brandeis Senior Vice President of Communications Ellen de Graffenreid in an email to The Hoot. Other significant changes include more transparency from the board, who will now immediately provide information about compensation to Brandeis faculty, rather than make them wait for Brandeis’ tax returns to be released at the end of the fiscal year.

Students and alumni, however, will “see the compensation figures when the university discloses its tax return,” de Graffenreid said. Usually this information is not available until 18 months after taxes are filed, but de Graffenreid expects that “the state of Massachusetts will be accelerating that disclosure date in the near future.”
Reinharz will continue to receive a yearly salary from Brandeis as part-time President Emeritus, a salary which will drop from $287,500 to $180,000 in July of 2014. The university also asserted that Reinharz remains an important public ally to Brandeis, especially in the realm of fundraising.