Jerry Brown questions new university leader's compensation

SACRAMENTO -- University of California regents approved a new leader for UC Riverside on Thursday, but not before Gov. Jerry Brown expressed concerns about high compensation for the incoming chancellor.

Kim Wilcox, a former official at Michigan State University, will earn compensation of $354,000 a year, an increase of almost 9% over the previous chancellor, who departed last year.


"I consider the growth in inequality in California, the U.S. and the world in general a problem that is tearing apart the social fabric," Brown said.

Brown voted against Wilcox's compensation, as did Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, according to Times reporter Carla Rivera.

The governor has previously expressed concern that public universities are focused on hiring high-priced campus leaders from other states.

"I believe on the campuses now there are many people who don't make near that salary that should have been groomed for leadership," the governor said.

The new president of the UC system, former Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, will be paid $570,000 a year.

That's nearly triple her $200,000 salary when she was a member of President Obama's Cabinet, but $21,000 less than outgoing UC President Mark Yudof.

A previous version of this post inaccurately said Gov. Jerry Brown did not cast a vote on Kim Wilcox's compensation. He voted against it.


Twitter: @chrismegerian