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It is no surprise that executives in the DC area are the highest-compensated in the national association community. But when adjusted to Washington's cost of living, does DC remain at the top? Also, how are women association executives faring this year? The recently released 2012 Guidestar Nonprofit Compensation Report has the answers.
According to the Guidestar 2012 report, the median compensation for DC-MD-VA association executives is $151,872, up from the 2011 Guidestar survey, followed by New York, N.Y.-New Jersey, $137,387 (down from 2011); Boston, $114,705 (down); San Francisco-Oakland, $114,062; and Chicago, considerably down, to $112,989 (in a near-tie with Baltimore, $112,927, and Los Angeles-Long Beach, $112,909).
Last year, the highest nonprofit median salary, $147,622, was found in the DC-MD-VA area, which has the highest concentration of association headquarters in the country. This was followed by New York-New Jersey, $142,595; Boston, $123,281; Chicago, $121,163; and Los Angeles-Long Beach (CA), $116,754.
When adjusted to DC's cost of living, the St. Louis, Mo.-Illinois area rises to the top: the area's actual median is $100,431, but adjusted to DC's cost of living, it is $155,616. This is followed by Houston, $99,980 (actual), adjusted to $151,616; DC, $151,872; Atlanta, $98,010 (actual), to $143,693; and Detroit, $101,754 (actual), to $143,442. The biggest drop, when adjusted for DC cost if living, is for New York, N.Y.-New Jersey, to $88,835.
Last year, when adjusted for DC cost of living, Boston rose to the top, to $173,703.
When it comes to gender, the Guidestar report found that the median compensation of female CEOs was lower than that of males at organizations of all sizes, ranging from 10.4 percent at organizations with budgets of $250,000-$500,000, to 24.8 percent at organizations with budgets of more than $50 million.
Women also have made gains in the past decade in the percentage of CEO positions held, but the representation declines as the organization budget size increases. For instance, in 2010 women make up a majority of CEOs for organizations with budgets of between $250,000 and $1 million. Women only make up 17 percent of CEOs whose groups have budgets greater than $50 million.
For more details and to order the 2012 Guidestar Nonprofit Compensation Report, go to www.guidestar.org.