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College pay: Former UD president’s salary in top 10 at private schools

A new analysis of data shows that the University of Dayton president’s job was one of the highest paid college gigs in 2015.

UD’s former president, Daniel Curran, had the eigth highest compensation of any private college president in the country in 2015, an analysis by The Chronicle of Higher Education of the most recent data available shows.

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Curran, who retired in 2016, raked in more than $2.4 million in 2015, his last full year on the job. That means in the last year of his UD presidency, Curran took home more than three times the $771,354 he made in total compensation in 2014, according to The Chronicle.

The majority of Curran’s compensation in 2015 came from defferred payments that he accrued over 13 years, according to the university. When Curran retired, he became elligible to receive the deffered payout of more than $1.6 million, according to UD.

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“Deferred compensation plans are common in higher education in order to attract, reward and retain high-quality leadership in a highly competitive environment,” the university said in a prepared statement.

The highest paid private college president in 2015 was Wake Forest University’s Nathan Hatch, who pulled in more than $4 million in total compensation. Emory University’s James Wagner was second with more than $3.5 million while C.L. Max Nikias at the University of Southern California came in at No. 3 with nearly $3.2 million in total comensation, according to The Chronicle.

Curran was UD’s first lay president and served in the position for 14 years. He was succeeded at UD by Eric Spina who came from Syracuse University in New York.

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Curran remains president emeritus at UD and is also an executive in residence for Asian affairs. He has also served as an independent company board member at Fuyao Glass America Inc.

"There's no question Dan Curran was an exceptional leader for this university during his 14-year tenure. During that time, the University grew in size and stature by almost every measure and was positioned for continued growth. We felt he was not only a preeminent leader in higher education, but the continuity of his leadership was crucial to maintaining the University's momentum and continued growth,” said Steve Cobb, former chairman of UD’s board of trustees in a prepared statement.

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