[Total pay inflated by now-worthless stock options]
As Corporate draws closer to unveiling details about annual pay to the top brass in 2010, a new Wall Street Journal story today says bonuses bounced back "at a speedy clip" during the year for many U.S. chief executives.
"CEO bonuses at 50 major corporations jumped a median of 30.5%, the biggest gain in at least three years,'' the Journal said. It cited a study for the paper of the first batch of corporate CEO pay disclosures by consulting firm Hay Group.
In 2009, as GCI's finances stabilized, Dubow got a $1.45 million cash bonus -- a 66% increase from 2008, according to filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. His total pay that year: $4.7 million.
Directors set the amounts
Then-chief finance officer Gracia Martore got a $950,000 bonus -- more than double what she received in 2008, SEC documents show; her total pay was $4 million. That significant bonus boost came in a year when she was temporary CEO during Dubow's four-month medical leave of absence. Last year, Martore was promoted to the company's No. 2 position: chief operating officer.
Since 2005, the year he became chief executive, through 2009, Dubow has received $7 million in bonuses, mostly in cash. His total compensation for those five years: $25.9 million, according to SEC filings. But much of that has been in now-worthless options. (See table, above.)
Martore has collected $2.8 million in mostly cash bonuses since 2005. Her total pay in 2005-2009, SEC filings show: $13.8 million. That, too, includes many now-worthless options.
Bonuses amid layoffs, furloughs
Today's WSJ story says bonuses in general "are rebounding as some hard-hit industries like autos recover and corporate profits climb."
Any big GCI bonuses for 2010 will be once more controversial because during the past two years, the board of directors has based the payouts partly on Corporate's success at cutting costs through layoffs and mandatory unpaid furloughs for rank-and-file employees.
Last year's one-week furlough in the first quarter resulted in a nearly 2% annual wage cut.
What's more, GCI's stock was a poor performer last year. Shares ended 2010 at $15.09, virtually unchanged from the end of 2009, when it closed at $14.85. During the same period, the widely watched S&P 500 index, a broader measure of overall market activity, rose 13%. Indeed, GCI's stock in 2010 underperformed competitors for the third consecutive year, the company acknowledged last month.
What about Dickey, Hunke?
The annual proxy report includes annual bonuses, stock awards, plus the dollar value of certain benefits for Dubow and the other four-highest paid executives. Last year, they also included U.S. newspapers President Bob Dickey and USA Today Publisher Dave Hunke.
This spreadsheet shows bonuses and total pay for Dubow and Martore going back to 2005. It also includes all available data for Dickey and Hunke.
Some details have already been published about stock awards in earlier documents with the SEC.
Related: links to GCI proxy reports with top pay for 1996-2009.