CHAPEL HILL — As UNC-Chapel Hill prepares for its next multibillion-dollar fundraising campaign, leaders want to sweeten the compensation package for the next vice chancellor in charge of raising money.
On Thursday, the university’s Board of Trustees is expected to approve a plan to award annual bonuses of up to nearly $99,000 to the next vice chancellor of development. The bonus would be on top of base salary, which could top out at $395,874, according to the UNC system’s compensation range.
The university is currently conducting a national search for the permanent replacement for Matt Kupec, the former vice chancellor for advancement who resigned last year in disgrace after he was found to have used university funds to take personal trips with Tami Hansbrough, another former UNC-CH fundraiser and mother of former Tar Heel basketball star Tyler Hansbrough. At the time of Kupec’s resignation, his salary was nearly $350,000.
On Wednesday, a trustee committee considered a plan to offer up annual “incentive compensation” of up to 25 percent of his or her base salary each year, if the vice chancellor meets specific performance goals. If the candidate is paid at the UNC system’s top limit, he or she could bag a yearly bonus of about $99,000. The bonus money would be paid with non-state funds, presumably from private gifts.
The move would be allowable under a university policy on non-salary and deferred compensation approved by trustees in June.
UNC-CH leaders argue that the market for top fundraisers is extremely competitive, and the university is expected to set a lofty goal for its next big fundraising drive. The last campaign, called “Carolina First,” brought in $2.38 billion for the university.
If the trustees go ahead with the plan, the new compensation scheme would give the university the ability to pay more than the UNC system’s salary range allows.
The bonuses would be awarded each August, according to the plan, depending on outcome of the vice chancellor’s annual review.
“This is very common now in running these enterprises at all universities,” said Chancellor Carol Folt.
Trustees were supportive of the bonus plan.
“I think it’s urgent,” said Phil Clay, a trustee and former chancellor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “Salaries that are paid are well, well beyond $400,000.”
The university has a significant fundraising operation. In the fiscal year that just ended, the university brought in nearly $271 million in private donations. That represented a 5.8 percent drop from 2012, said Julia Sprunt Grumbles, who has served as interim vice chancellor for advancement.
Grumbles said the drop was partly a function of turnover in top administrative ranks and partly because donors know a large campaign will be launched in the near future.