Timothy P. White, California State University's incoming chancellor, has requested a 10 percent pay cut, saying in a letter to trustees, that he hopes the move will send a signal that "public higher education matters to all of us, and that we each must play a part in the rebuilding."
CSU's board of trustees met today in Long Beach to approve White's compensation package. He was in line to receive the same pay as outgoing Chancellor Charles Reed: a $421,500 salary plus a $30,000 supplement from CSU foundations. After rounding the pay cut White requested to his base salary, he will be paid $380,000 plus the $30,000 supplement.
White, 63, comes to CSU after four years at the helm of UC Riverside, where his pay in 2011 was $327,200.
In his letter to CSU trustees requesting the pay cut, White said voter approval last week of Gov. Jerry Brown's tax initiative does not alleviate all of CSU's financial problems.
"Despite the passage of Proposition 30, there remain grave economic issues to solve in California and the California State University. Indeed, the success of Proposition 30 was the voice of the voters and taxpayers of California to start to reinvest in education," he wrote.
"I also recognize that Californians expect me to properly steward these resources. Consequently, as l join the faculty, staff and students who have experienced cuts, salary freezes, and increased fees, I too must do my part."
The union that represents CSU professors has had a contentious relationship with Reed, frequently criticizing him for executive pay packages that the union felt were unfair.
Lillian Taiz, president of the California Faculty Association immediately posted her reaction to White's request on Twitter: "Looks like a fresh start."
Editor's note, 12:36 p.m.: This post was updated to reflect White's pay of $380,000.