Median pay for corporate directors increases modestly to $227K

While retainers are rising, companies are shifting away from paying board members for attending meetings.

Corporate directors might be getting more cash now than they did a year ago, but it’s a modest increase given the expansion of boards’ responsibilities, according to a recent analysis by consulting firm Towers Watson & Co.

Last year, the median pay for outside directors at the 500 largest U.S. companies was $227,000, up 3 percent from $220,000 in 2011. While directors usually receive a mix of equity, cash and fees for attending meetings, the increase was driven by growth in cash compensation, according to Doug Friske, global head of executive compensation consulting at Towers Watson, which analyzed proxies through June 30. 

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Erin E. Harrison

Erin E. Harrison is the Editor in Chief of InsideCounsel magazine. Harrison’s professional background includes extensive expertise in both print and online media, highlighted by...

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