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It pays to be CIO: Corporate jets, private security, car allowances and more

Ann Bednarz | Aug. 17, 2012
As CIOs ascend the executive ranks, many senior tech leaders are enjoying access to valuable perks and generous benefits.

United Continental: $127,812

Keith Halbert, former executive vice president and CIO at United Continental Holdings, netted $127,812 in perks and compensation extras before leaving the company in April 2011. His tally included: $79,105 for a 401(k) cash-match program; $15,925 for company-made 401(k) contributions; $11,545 for tax indemnification; $4,589 for company-paid insurance premiums; and $16,648 for various perks including air travel, financial planning and tax services. In his final year with the airline, Halbert received a total compensation package worth $5 million ($3.1 million was for severance payments).

Home Depot: $100,681

Home Depot's top execs receive a perks allowance -- $125,000 per year for the CEO and $85,000 for the company's other named executive officers, including Matt Carey, executive vice president and CIO. The allowance, dubbed the Supplemental Executive Choice Program (SECP), can be used to pay for financial planning services, medical services, auto expenses, life and disability insurance, excess personal liability coverage, and coverage under a retiree health savings plan. Carey's SECP spending ($84,774) accounted for the bulk of his $100,681 perks package. Carey also made personal use of company tickets to entertainment events, but Home Depot didn't report the exact value of those outings. Carey's total 2011 compensation package was valued at $3.2 million.

Nash Finch: $98,147

At $913,505, Cal Sihilling's total compensation is among the lowest in our tally, yet his perks rank among the most valuable. Sihilling, who is executive vice president and CIO at Nash Finch, netted perks worth $98,147. Of that amount, $74,794 is attributed to a company contribution to Nash-Finch's supplemental executive retirement plan. The remainder is unspecified.

Walgreens: $83,995

Tim Theriault, senior vice president and CIO at Walgreens, collected a $2.9 million pay package in 2011. His perks totaled $83,995 and included: $34,311 for dividend equivalents on unvested restricted stock; $19,395 for Walgreens' profit sharing restoration plan; $13,576 for profit sharing retirement plan; $6,717 for term life insurance; and $9,996 in unspecified perquisites and personal benefits

Norfolk Southern: $83,309

As part of her $4 million compensation package from Norfolk Southern, Deb Butler netted $83,309 in perks. Butler, who is executive vice president of planning and CIO at the shipping and transportation company, earned the following extras: $13,302 for company-paid life insurance premiums, $55,089 for company-matched charitable contributions, $5,000 for an annual physical, $975 for use of corporate facilities, $214 in gifts, and $154 for spousal/guest meals and travel.


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