Salary To-Do: Gannett CEO Mike Reed Returns To His Previous Rate

Gannett CEO Mike Reed is being called out for taking a high salary even as the publishing company aggressively cuts expenses. 

Reed earned $3.9 million in 2023, 14% more than the prior year, according to the Boston Business Journal. 

That’s 76 times the median pay of $50,856 per employee, the Business Journal reports, based on analysis of a proxy report filed with the SEC. The average employee salary fell by $179, it adds. 

A look at the proxy report shows that Reed’s base compensation was restored to $900,000 in 2023. In addition, there was a bonus of $1.3 million and $1.7 million in stock awards, the Business Journal adds.

Reed had taken a large pay cut in 2022, bringing his total pay down to $4.5 million, versus $12 million in 2021, according to 2022 reports. 



Apparently he is making it up. 

Gannett declined to comment on executive salaries, the Business Journal continues. 

The question is: are the salary rates fair?

And is Reed helping or hurting the news business?

Total head count at Gannett fell by 11% last year, the Business Journal continues. And while newsroom staffs are being reduced, the chain has also eliminated Associated Press. None of this can help the free flow of information. 

Additionally, Gannett has reduced its real estate, resulting in adoption of a hybrid work model in some locations. 

Of course, disproportionate CEO salaries are not unique to the publishing industry. And Reed is not the only highly paid executive at Gannett – CFO Douglas E. Horne’s base salary was hiked to $775,000 based on his increased responsibilities and performance, the proxy report states.  

Neither are in the very top tier of executive salaries.
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