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CEO of Equity Salary $400,000 while 99% of actors equity now unemployed

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goldenboy
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I just learned that Mary McColl's salary as the CEO of Actors Equity is $400,000 per year. I'm sorry but that seems awfully high especially when 99% of our union is unemployed.

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And you learned this where?

"This thread reads like a series of White House memos." — Mister Matt
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goldenboy said: "I just learned that Mary McColl's salary as the CEO of Actors Equity is$400,000 per year. I'm sorry but that seems awfully high especially when 99% of our union is unemployed."

If you’re a member of the union, then you are also aware that the union has furloughed and laid off a substantial number of employees and McColl, who makes about $390k, which is typical for the executive director of a union of AEA’s size, has taken a pay cut. 


Lizzie: all unions are required to make public their annual financial information, including staff salaries. It can be accessed here:

https://olms.dol-esa.gov/query/getOrgQry.do

 

It is the first option in the drop down “Union Name by Abbreviaton”. 

 

"...everyone finally shut up, and the audience could enjoy the beginning of the Anatevka Pogram in peace."
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Thank you!

"This thread reads like a series of White House memos." — Mister Matt
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Thank you, Kad, for being the voice of reason, and beating me to the response.

While it's fine to scrutinize what Mary's salary is, it must also be remembered that it is actually on the low end for her position in an organization as large and with similar operating budgets. Anyone who thinks Equity would be able to get someone nearly as qualified as her for a lower salary who would then stick around for any length of time is just dreaming.

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The world can be a terrible place for those seeking unfairness behind every door.
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That’s pretty standard so I’m not surprised.
Isn’t the minimum equity pay per week roughly $2000? That’s around $104k a year. So having the CEO salary 4x that is not bad.
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Lol.
People finding out if you aren't an actor you get paid more money.
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Wick3 said: "That’s pretty standard so I’m not surprised.
Isn’t the minimum equity pay per week roughly $2000? That’s around $104k a year. So having the CEO salary 4x that is not bad.
"

That's only Broadway minimum.  Most Equity actors are making nowhere near that a week (usually more in the $600-$800 a week range pending on the contract).

But regardless, I still agree it's nowhere near unethical for the CEO of a major union to continue to make $400,000 right now, especially when they've already taken a huge pay cut.  It's obviously incredibly unfortunate how much of her union is out of work, but that's why she's getting paid, to find ways to get them back to work and support them when they're not.

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Kad said: "If you’re a member of the union, then you are also aware that the union has furloughed and laid off a substantial number of employees and McColl, who makes about $390k, which is typical for the executive director of a union of AEA’s size, has taken a pay cut."

Thank you, Kad, for this reminder. A lot of employees of the union are out of work too - when the union doesn't work, neither do they. I find it so ridiculous how many people think that AEA wants things to stay shut down when an extended shutdown impacts not only its members but its employees. The point is making is safe for everyone to return to work - one of the reasons the union exists in the first place.

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goldenboy said: "I just learned that Mary McColl's salary as the CEO of Actors Equity is$400,000 per year. I'm sorry but that seems awfully high especially when 99% of our union is unemployed."

You have no idea what you are talking about.  She's working harder now than ever.

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And I can guarantee you that at this present moment in history she is probably underpaid. She has a huge task laid at her feet to work out with less staff than usual. People’s lives are in her hands.
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Yes, $400,000 is actually pretty low on the CEO scale. And one who is willing to take a true pay cut and not some BS stock option cut.

And while it sucks that everyone below her is probably unemployed, she is the one responsible for keeping everything going during this pandemic. The fact that she chooses to stay and is (probably) doing what she can to make things right and to make the right decisions is a very tough job.

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I’m actually surprised the president and other elected positions don’t get a salary.
Also, how does the job of the CEO differ from the president? I take it the CEO makes more financial decisions within the organization and the president is the main one negotiating contracts of the members?
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This thread is a textbook example of why people shouldn't run their mouth on topics they know nothing about.

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Call_me_jorge said: "I’m actually surprised the president and other elected positions don’t get a salary.
Also, how does the job of the CEO differ from the president? I take it the CEO makes more financial decisions within the organization and the president is the main one negotiating contracts of the members?
"

A lot of people are surprised when they learn how unions actually operate- and not just actually operate, but how they legally must operate. Whenever I see question like "why doesn't Equity just do X?", the answer is usually "They legally cannot do that."

Labor law in this country is designed to make it harder for unions to operate, plain and simple, under the guise of preventing corruption. Make no mistake- corruption in unions was a big problem in the early and mid-century. But what resulted was a series of byzantine laws that make it harder for unions to do things.

Equity, like most American labor unions, has two sets of people operating it: members like Kate Shindle and the rest of the Equity councilors and committee members who are elected by the membership, and the full-time staff like Mary McColl, who are hired by the staff (executives require input from the elected members, like how Cabinet officials are approved by the Senate). The elected members are the ones who make policy, approve budgets, and so on. Staff carry out and enforce those policies. It's a Legislative and Executive branch, sort of, and Kate Shindle is basically head of the Legislative branch representing the membership, Mary McColl is the head of the Executive branch and she leads the staff and the operations of the union as an institution. Contract negotiations are handled by a mix of staff and membership, a mix of institutional and operational knowledge and policy demands that represent the members.

Labor law requires a lot of things. Elected officials can't draw a salary from the union and aren't employees, due to the risk of conflict of interest. Staff likewise can't be active members of the union or serve in elected positions, also due to the conflict of interest. Conflict of interest is a major concern in labor law; even the appearance of it could result in action from the Department of Labor, particularly under an administration that is not labor friendly.

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Updated On: 7/10/20 at 01:02 PM
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400k as a CEO in New York City? That's not a lot of money for that position here at all. 

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Bettyboy72 said: "And I can guarantee you that at this present moment in history she is probably underpaid. She has a huge task laid at her feet to work out with less staff than usual. People’s lives are in her hands."

Nonprofit companies executives are working their butts off to get the PPP money and other grants and loans available from the government to keep people getting paid and the lights on.

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Nonsense.  The CEO's and Executive Directors are asking their staff, many of whom have had pay cuts, or have been forced to take furloughs, to process those loans.  The executive team may sign the documents, but they're not doing any of the actual work.

But hey, that's America.  Why should a pandemic make a difference?

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theatrepersonNYC said: "Nonsense. The CEO's and Executive Directors are asking their staff, many of whom have had pay cuts, or have been forced to take furloughs, to process those loans. The executive team may sign the documents, but they're not doing any of the actual work.

But hey, that's America. Why should a pandemic make a difference?
"

Here's a hint: when you have no idea what you are talking about, resist posting. (Thanks, though, for the word of warning at the beginning of your post. It was pretty apt.)

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The CEO of our nonprofit makes $275K and I’d actually approve of him getting an INCREASE given he appears to be working 24/7 and is often in the news as an expert in our field.  
 

“Nonprofit” does not mean low salaries. It means your board members do not profit off the work the way for profit board members do. We serve thousands and thousands of low income folks — exponentially more now — and without our CEOs outstanding leadership, I fear many of these clients would be struggling, causing societal issues, draining public funds, etc. For nonprofits serving large numbers, believe me, you want to attract a CEO who knows her/his stuff. 
 

I assume while unions are not 501c3’s that the same is true for union management.