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April 9, 2020

Executive Compensation at the NRA (2018)

by Anne Paddock

The National Rifle Association of America (NRA) is a non-profit 501 (c) (4) organization or what many people refer to as an membership advocacy organization that fights tirelessly for our second amendment rights and pays their executives very well while also paying for first class or charter travel, travel for companions, health or social club dues or initiation fees, gross up payments and tax indemnification, and provides housing allowances or housing for personal use.

The most recent IRS Form 990 (2018) reports the organization employed 816 individuals who were compensated $63.9 million, which equates to an average compensation of $78,300. 122 employees received more than $100,000 in compensation while the 16 most highly compensated key executives received $13.4 million dollars in 2018:

  • $2,224,427:  Wayne LaPierre, CEO and EVP
  • $1,392,668:  Chris W Cox, Executive Director, NRA ILA
  • $1,377,617:  Oliver L North, President
  • $  948,769:  Wilson H Phillips, Treasurer (ending 9/13/18)
  • $  919,969:  Joshua L Powell, Chief of Staff and Executive Director
  • $  806,768:  Tyler Schropp, Managing Director, Advancement
  • $  733,540:  Todd Grable, Executive Director, Membership
  • $  720,000:  Robert K Weaver, Executive Director, General Operations (former)
  • $  655,730:  Douglas Hamlin, Executive Director, Publications
  • $  648,215:  Craig B Spray, Treasurer (beginning 9/13/18)
  • $  602,853:  David Lehman, Deputy Executive Director, NRA ILA
  • $  545,608:  Eric Prohardt, Director, Education and Training
  • $  535,045:  Michael Marcellin, Managing Director, Affinity and Licensing (former)
  • $  489,653:  John C Frazer, Secretary and General Counsel
  • $  461,028:  Joseph C Debergalis, Jr, Executive Director, General Ops (beginning 12/3)
  • $  270,000:  Marion P Hammer, Director

15 of the 16 (94%) of the most highly compensated employees are male while 1 is a female. The female, Marion P Hammer worked an estimated 5 hours per week and was compensated $270,000, which equates to $5,200 per week or about $1,000 an hour.

Wayne LaPierre received the highest compensation at $2.2 million, $800,000 more than in 2017 when he received total compensation of $1.4 million.

Chris W Cox received total compensation of $1.4 million compared to $1.2 million in 2017.

Oliver North’s compensation of nearly $1.4 million was paid by Ackerman McQueen, an advertising agency based in Oklahoma City but with offices nationwide. Why this was done is not explained. However, independent contractors outside of a non-profit do not typically pay large compensation packages to employees of a non-profit. It is important to note that the NRA paid $32 million to Ackerman McQueen in 2018 for public relations and advertising.

Wilson H Phillips received nearly $950,000 in 2018 compared to $710,000 in 2017.

Joshua Powerll received $920,000 in compensation in 2018 compared to $780,000 in 2017.

Tyler Schropp received $807,000 in compensation in 2018 compared to $690,000 in 2017.

Robert K Weaver’s employment ended in 2016 but he still received $720,000 in compensation in 2018.

Michael Marcellin’s employment ended in 2016 but he still received $535,045 in compensation in 2018.

Tom Selleck, a board member was paid $476,000 for the purchase of a group of collectible firearms.

The NRA paid for first class or charter travel, travel for companions, housing allowances or residences for personal use, gross up payments or tax indemnifications, and health or social club dues or initiation fees. To read more detail about these expenses, see Schedule J, Part III, Supplemental information on the Form 990 (2018) submitted to the IRS.

The NRA paid more than $100,000 in compensation to 123 independent contractors in 2018. The 5 most highly compensated were reported to be:

  • $32 million:  Ackerman McQueen of Oklahoma City, OK for public relations and advertising
  • $26 million:  Infocision Management Corp of Akron, OH for membership processing and contributions
  • $14 million:  Brewer Attorneys and Counselors of Dallas, TX for legal services
  • $13 million:  Membership Marketing Partners of Fairfax, VA for fundraising, printing, and mailing
  • $ 9 million:  Valtim, Inc of Forest, VA for fulfillment center services

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