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February 21, 2018

3

Executive Compensation at the American Diabetes Association

by Anne Paddock

The American Diabetes Association consists of three separate 501 (c) (3) organizations:

  • American Diabetes Assocaition® (ADA)
  • American Diabetes Association Research Foundation, Inc. (ADARF)
  • American Diabetes Association Property Title Holding Corp. (ADARTHC)

All three organizations are based out of the same address in Arlington, Virginia but have distinct functions which are briefly described as follows:

  • The ADA is the organization that most people refer to when they are talking about the American Diabetes Association. This organization provides information, delivers services, funds research and gives voice to those denied their rights because of diabetes, according the organization’s website. In 2016, the ADA had 1,502 employees.
  • The ADARF secures major gifts and grants to fund diabetes-related research. The CEO, CFO and the Chief Scientific and Medical Officer of the ADA serve in the same roles for the ADARF. The ADARF reports having no employees in 2016.
  • The ADARTHC holds title to property utilized by the ADA and is managed by the CEO and CFO of the ADA. The ADARTHC reports having no employees in 2016.

Both the ADA and the ADARF award grants. Each of the above organization’s files an IRS Form 990 annually and the most recent (2016) reports the following information:

The 1502 employees of the ADA received total compensation of $69.1 million (an average of $46,000 each). 90 employees received more than $100,000 in compensation. The most highly compensated 26 individuals of the ADA received $6.2 million (an average of $240,000 each) and were reported to be:

  • $524,096:  Kevin L Hagan, CEO
  • $470,922:  Robert Ratner, Chief Scientific and Medical Officer (departed employment 12/19/16)
  • $386,446:  Cynthia J Hallberlin, COO
  • $323,721:  Corey Gordon, Chief Development and Stewardship
  • $302,178: Charlotte M Carter, CFO
  • $284,065:  Jane Chiang, SVP, Medical and Community Affairs (departed employment 11/25/16)
  • $277,809:  ER Banfield, SVP, Operations and Integration
  • $269,014:  Kimberly Baich, Chief Marketing and Communications
  • $259,537:  Shereen Arent, Chief Advocacy Officer
  • $231,264:  Tamara Darsow, VP, Research Programs
  • $216,501: Suehilla Glass, SVP, Field Development and Operations
  • $211,827:  Linda Cann, VP Professional Education
  • $209,423:  Christopher Boynton, VP, East Territory
  • $205,069:  Greg Elfers, Chief Field Development Officer (departed employment 8/7/15)*
  • $200,000:  Geraldine W. Brown, Director of Corporate Development (departed employment 10/31/14)*
  • $196,132:  Deborah L Johnson, CFO (departed employment 10/13/15)*
  • $194,594:  Michael Eisenstein, SVP, Products and Publications
  • $193,419:  Michael Chae, Regional Director
  • $187,217:  Dave Becker, VP, Central Territory
  • $185,555:  Suzanne Werdann, VP, Sports and Entertainment
  • $179,032:  Jonathan Webb, VP, Corporate Alliance
  • $178,275:  Elaine Curran, VP, Development
  • $165,226:  Christa Wilson, Interim SVP IT&S and Chief Technical Officer
  • $155,835:  Jeanette Flom, VP, Eastern Division (departed employment 9/16/16)
  • $127,099:  Rodney Sampson, SVP, IT&S and Chief Technical Officer (departed employment 7/22/16)
  • $110,434:  Andrea Maddox, SVP Eastern Key Markets and Program Implementation (departed 11/6/15)*

*These 4 employees were not employed with ADA in 2016 and consequently the compensation reported appears to be severance pay totaling $711,635.

The ADA reported paying for travel for companions . Notes indicate this was for the Chief Executive Officer’s companion.

The ADAARF does not report compensation because the organization does not have employees. Instead, the IRS Form 990 for 2016 reports the ADAARF paid $1.4 million in fees for services described as management.

On Schedule L of the IRS Form 990 (2016) submitted by ADAARF, $4.5 million in grants/assistance were given to “interested persons” – which are people affiliated with the organizations. Specifically, the following 35 grant review committee members received the following research grant awards:

  • $233,920:  Ling Qi at The Regents at the University of Michigan for career development
  • $243,203:  Labros S Sidossis at Rutgers, the State University of NJ for translational science award
  • $200,000:  Howard William Davidson at the University of Colorado for innovative clinical or translational science
  • $199,999:  Muhammad Abdul-Ghani at the UOT Health Science Center for clinical science and epidemiology award
  • $199,856:  John Peter Mordes at the University of Massachusetts for clinical/translation research
  • $197,984:  Christopher G Kevil at Louisiana State U Health Science Center for translation science award
  • $172,500:  Carey Nien-Kai Lumeng at the University of Michigan for career development
  • $172,486:  Janet K Bergeon at the Regents at the University of Colorado for career development
  • $115,000: Reza Abdi at Brigham and Women’s Hospital for basic science
  • $115,000:  Espen Eric Spangenberg at East Carolina University for basic science
  • $115,000:  Xin-Liang Ma at Thomas Jefferson University for basic science
  • $115,000:  Alexander Staruschenko at Medical College of Wisconsin for basic science
  • $115,000:  Qingchung Tong at University of Texas Health Center for basic science
  • $115,000:  Yong Xia at Ohio State University for basic science
  • $115,000:  Yi-Guang Chen at the Medical College of Wisconsin for basic science
  • $115,000:  Richard Glenn Kibbey at Yale University for basic science
  • $115,000:  John Patrick Driver at the University of Florida for basic science
  • $115,000:  Justin L Grobe at the University of Iowa for basic science
  • $115,000:  Kathryn M Haskins at the Regents of the University of Colorado for basic science
  • $115,000:  Chih-Hao Lee at Harvard University for basic science
  • $115,000:  Ji Li at the Research Foundation for SUNY on behalf of University of Buffalo for basic science
  • $115,000:  Yuguang Shi at the Milton S Hershey Medical Center at Penn State for basic science
  • $115,000:  Laura Cristina Alonso at the University of Massachusetts for basic science
  • $115,000:  Jeffrey S Elmendorf at the Trustees of Indiana University for basic science
  • $115,000:  Yingqun Huang at Yale University for basic science
  • $115,000:  Jang H Youn at the University of Southern California for basic science
  • $115,000:  Ji Li at the University of Mississippi Medical Center for innovative basic science
  • $115,000:  Qinglin Yang at the University of Alabama for innovative basic science
  • $115,000:  Darleen A Sandoval at the Regents at the University of Michigan for innovative basic science
  • $115,000:  William Durante at the Curators at the University of Missouri for innovative basic science
  • $115,000:  David Aaron Jacobson at Vanderbilt University for innovative basic science
  • $115,000:  Jonathan S Bogan at the Yale University School of Medicine for innovative basic science
  • $ 50,000:  Anders H Berg at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center for innovation
  • $45,000:  Allison B Goldfine at Joslin Diabetes Center, Inc. for mentor-based minority postdoctoral fellowship
  • $45,000:  Holly A Ingraham at the Regents at the U of CA for mentor-based minority postdoctoral fellowship

ADARTHC’s sole purpose is to hold property which means the revenue stream is from rent is then paid to the ADA.

In looking at the prevalence of diabetes in the US population, there are two numbers worth looking at:  the total number of people with diabetes and the percentage of the population that has diabetes. According to the CDC, 1.6 million people or 0.93% of the population had diabetes in 1958.  In 1980, those numbers increased to 5.5 million or 2.5% of the population. By 2000, 12 million Americans or 4.4% of the population had diabetes and by 2010, 21.1 million Americans or 7% of the population had diabetes (primarily Type 2).  The CDC also estimates that 86 million Americans or 1 out of 3 have prediabetes, which can increase the possibility of developing Type 2 diabetes.

For 60 years, the trend has been going in the wrong direction and yet the ADA (which was established in 1940) raises nearly $200 million a year, employs more than 1,500 people, and works to “prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes.” The organization does this by education, advocacy, and providing grants for research. So, why are more Americans in both real numbers and as a percentage of the population suffering from diabetes and why isn’t the ADA succeeding in reducing these numbers?

The percentage of the population may be an indicator of why.  What changed over the past 60 years? Primarily lifestyle choices and specifically our diet which has also contributed to the obesity epidemic. The CDC reports that from 1960 – 1994, the percentage of the population that is obese increased from 13% to 23%.  By 2004, 31% of the US population was obese and current estimates are at about 35%.

So, the ADA is obviously focused on diet which leads me to their website where “Recipes for Healthy Living” or “Diabetes-Friendly” recipes are posted on-line. Among these recipes are 51 recipes that include bacon (a meat labeled carcinogenic by the World Health Organization), 511 recipes that include cheese, 195 recipes that include butter, 120 recipes that include beef, 541 recipes that include chicken, 152 recipes that include pork, and 73 recipes that feature eggs. When I searched for “plant-based” recipes on the ADA site, the result was 10 recipes, 4 of which were vegan, and 6 of which included cheese, yogurt, and even turkey or chicken while a search for “vegan” recipes yielded 5 recipes, of which only 2 were vegan. What’s going on?

 If the ADA “envisions a life free of diabetes and all its burdens,” which is fueled by their mission to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes, then the questions that naturally arise include:
  • Why is the ADA not promoting a whole grain low-fat plant-based diet to prevent and reverse prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes?
  • Why is the ADA promoting recipes that include foods high in fat and particularly saturated fat?
  • Why is the ADA promoting the consumption of foods that have been identified as carcinogenic by the World Health Organization?
  • Does the ADA really want to prevent and reverse prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes?
  • And, why is the ADA paying millions and millions of dollars to executives and employees who have not and are not reversing the trend in diabetes in this country?  Could they possibly be focusing their education and advocacy on the wrong lifestyle choices in relation to Type 2 diabetes?

To read the IRS 990’s (2016) for the ADA organization, click here.

3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Sara Pomish
    Jan 27 2019

    Clearly you do not understand the etiology of diabetes.

    The ADA is actually serving up a lot of whole grain foods in their recipes, which is part of the problem. You see, those “high fat” foods you so blythely deride do not cause blood sugars to rise.

    Are you diabetic? Have you ever worn a continuous glucose monitor? Checked your blood sugar after a big bowl of “whole grain oatmeal with bananas” maybe? I have. It raised my blood sugar by 200 points. A piece of chicken? I don’t even need insulin for that.

    Your plant-based agenda is clearly showing. Also, if you paid any attention to current dietary guidelines, you’d see that the shift toward more saturated fat is ongoing, as more evidence piles up that inflammation (due to glucose) is as strong or perhaps stronger cuase of coronaryy artery disease.

    What’s even more shameful about the ADA is that they have given ZERO dollars to Denise Faustman at Faustman Labs (Harvard/Mass General) who is currently in human trials for a vaccine against Type 1 diabetes. She applied for funding on multiple occasions and was denied.

    You know nothing about diabetes, and uou shouldn’t be commenting on anything healthy rlated.
    You’re clearly less concerned about the health of diabetics than you are your own agenda.

  2. Jan 27 2019

    Sara:

    Clearly, you do not understand the purpose of the post (hint: it’s in the title). The post is about executive compensation at the American Diabetes Association which leads the reader to ask why the executives are being so highly compensated and why the organization is spending so much money while the number of people with type 2 diabetes is exploding. To re-iterate, the post ASKS:

    If the ADA “envisions a life free of diabetes and all its burdens,” which is fueled by their mission to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes, then the questions that naturally arise include:

    Why is the ADA not promoting a whole grain low-fat plant-based diet to prevent and reverse prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes?

    Why is the ADA promoting recipes that include foods high in fat and particularly saturated fat?

    Why is the ADA promoting the consumption of foods that have been identified as carcinogenic by the World Health Organization?

    Does the ADA really want to prevent and reverse prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes?

    And, why is the ADA paying millions and millions of dollars to executives and employees who have not and are not reversing the trend in diabetes in this country?  Could they possibly be focusing their education and advocacy on the wrong lifestyle choices in relation to Type 2 diabetes?

    No organization should be promoting a diet with food labeled as carcinogenic (i.e bacon, lunch meats, etc) by the World Health Organization and yet the American Diabetes Association does. And, here it doesn’t matter if you have type 1 or type 2, carcinogens cause cancer.

    If I paid any attention to current dietary guidelines, I would NOT see that the shift toward more saturated fat is ongoing (and, I certainly wouldn’t be healthy). According to Dr. Garth Davis, MD:

    1. The muscle in our body is the greatest consumer of sugar and therefore the site where insulin must work effectively for us to remain healthy. When we eat meat, we are eating protein and fat. The protein raises insulin, which blocks fat mobilization from the cells and causes the consumed fat to enter the cell. When we eat an apple or a potato, there is insulin secretion but no fat to be placed into the muscle cell (Barnard, Roberts, et al 1998; Lara-Castro and Garvey 2004, 2008; Watt and Hoy 2012). Insulin resistance is due to fat toxicity to the muscle cell (Anderson, Haynie, et al 2015).

    2. One of the major factors causing fat to be collected in the muscle is inflamation (Coletta and Mandarino, 2011); Eckel, Grudy, et al 2005), which causes damage to the muscle cells that result in fat accumulation. We have evolved from the bicarbonate-producing diet of our ancestors to our current high-protein acidic diet. That increased protein consumption corresponds to greater intake of amino acids rich in sulfur (Sebastion, Frassetto, et al 2002). Remember that amino acids are actually acids. When our body becomes too acidic, a state known as metabolic acidosis, our tissues become inflamed. Since our blood chemistry must remain within extremely tight margins for us to stay alive, our bodies go into emergency mode to keep the blood pH at safe levels. One mechanism by which the body fights to maintain pH is grabbing calcium from muscles and dumping it into the bloodstream. Calcium can neutralize the acid. This leaching of calcium from muscle cells to buffer the acid causes muscle wasting and leads to fat deposition in the muscle cells (Adeva and south 2011); de Nadai de Nadai, et al 2013; South, Donapetry, et al 2011; Frassetto, Morris, et al 2001, Fagherazzi, Vilier, et al 2013). So, people on a high protein low carb may have lipids in the normal range but their bicarbonate levels could be very low, which means they are in a state of acidosis, slowly but steadily harming their bodies and creating inflammation and disease.

    Contrary to your statement that “high fat foods…do not cause blood sugars to rise:”

    3. See the EPIC study – the European Prospective Investigation in Cancer and Nutrition), studies that looked at the relationship between disease and nutrition. Hundreds of scientists followed more than 500,000 people from ten European countries for 12 years and concluded that meat, and especially processed meat (i.e. bacon, lunch meats, etc) is significantly associated with the development of type 2 diabetes, and fruit and vegetable consumption is associated with a decrease in diabetes development (also see Consortium 2013, 2014). That glucose and fructose consumption actually correlated with less diabetes should actually make people ask why a meat heavy low-carb diet isn’t showing a decrease in type 2 diabetes?

    4. See the Adventist Health Studies. Like the EPIC studies, the researchers followed thousands of Adventists for many years and found that animal protein was significantly associated with diabetes. In fact, they found a graduated increase in the risk of developing diabetes depending on the amount of animal protein consumed. Plant-based eaters have a very low prevalence of diabetes (2.9%), followed by vegetarians (3.2%), pescatarians (4.8%), and meat eaters (7.6%). The Adventist meat eaters had much less diabetes than the US average, which is explained by the fact that Adventists tend to limit meat consumption, even if they don’t identify as vegetarians. The researchers found that the weekly consumption of meat over a 17-year period increased the risk of developing diabetes by 74% over that of vegetarians. The correlation held true even when controlling for weight, which was done by comparing vegans and vegetarians to the slimmest meat eaters.

    5. See the Nurses’ Health Study and Health Professionals Follow-Up Study which were conducted by researchers from Harvard. There were two nurses studies (the one started in 1976 that followed 122,000 nurses and the second that followed 116,000 nurses since 1989). The Health Professionals Follow up Study followed 51,000 male health care professionals since 1986. The studies showed that there was a significant association between meat, processed meat, and developing Type II diabetes (increasing meat consumption by half a serving a day increased the risk of developing diabetes by nearly 50% – see Fund, Schulze, et al. 2004; Pan, Sunset al 2011, 2013; Ley, Sun, et al, 2014, van Dam, Willet, et al. 2002).

    6. See the Women’s Health Initiative that followed 37,000 women for 8 years. It also showed a correlation between animal protein consumption and diabetes, (especially hot dogs and bacon, carcinogenic by the WHO) (Song, Manson, et al 2004). Like the EPIC study, sugar was completely unrelated to the development of diabetes (Janket, Manson, et al 2003).”

    In summary, there are many epidemiological studies that confirm the animal protein-diabetes correlation, as well as many that show plant-based diets (specifically a whole grain no oil plant based) protect against diabetes (see http://www.nutritionFacts.org for a summary of many of these studies).

    If you know of 1 study that specifically shows that people who eat meat are protected from type 2 diabetes, please enlighten me as I would love to read it (and specifically who paid for it, how it was done, and how the conclusions were made).

    I can understand your frustration with the ADA from a Type 1 diabetic’s point of view but that doesn’t give you the right to determine who can write about the ADA, how they spend money, and what they promote (especially given the explosion of Type 2 in the US over the past 30 years). And, you are certainly not in the position to tell anyone what they are less concerned about. If you have scientific information to back up your statements then present the information (disregarding other opinions because they don’t support your opinions doesn’t work well without evidence). We’ll have to disagree about what I know and what I should and shouldn’t comment on, especially since this is my site supported by me. And, if my plant based agenda is showing, I’m thrilled because a whole grain no oil plant-based diet has so many health benefits.

    In closing, the point of this post is not about type 1 diabetes (which is not reversible). The post addresses a very large, well-funded, non-profit who pays their executives very well and yet type 2 diabetes rates continue to rise at alarming rates in this country where 2 out of 3 people are overweight and 1 out of 3 are obese. For a country so obsessed with protein and low carbs, you have to ask yourself why these diets/lifestyle choices are not working and why the ADA, who is so well funded isn’t reversing the trend.

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