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December 24, 2021


Executive Compensation at March of Dimes (2020)

by Anne Paddock

2020 was another tough year for the March of Dimes and yet, they continue to march on (no pun intended).  Just seven years ago, the March of Dimes had $75 million in net fund assets and was raising nearly $200 million annually but they were spending more than they raised. Since then, revenue has declined and the organization went into a negative net fund position because they were spending $8-$27 million more than they raised annually, had to fund a pension/post retirement fund for employees (which is still an $80 million liability in 2020), and had losses on investments. Things were not looking good by 2016 so the organization brought in a new president in 2017 following the retirement of the longtime president.

But revenue continued to decline (from $169 million in 2016 to $164 million in 2017 to $141 million in 2018 to $130 million in 2019 to $101 million in 2020).  Staff cuts were made (the organization had 1,513 employees in 2016 compared to 730 in 2020), first class travel finally appeared to be eliminated (the IRS Form 990 in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 shows staff did not fly first class, as in previous years), and the organization cut expenses and did not spend more than they raised in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and, yet the organization is still in a negative net asset position (-$20 million in 2020 primarily due to pension and post retirement costs).

In 2020, revenue declined by 22% from $130 million to $101 million (nearly all of which came from contributions, gifts, and grants), despite the use of multiple professional fundraisers and heavy advertising in the Wall Street Journal.

Expenses totaled $100 million with the largest expense reported to be compensation.  730 employees received $54 million, which equates to an average compensation of $74,000.  88 employees (compared to 100 in 2019) received more than $100,000 in compensation with the 14 most highly compensated employees reported to be:

  • $524,451:  Stacey D Stewart, President and CEO
  • $426,961:  Rahul Guptal, SVP, Chief Medical Officer
  • $305,565:  Frederick A Brogdon, SVP, COO, and Board Officer
  • $300,701:  Andrew S Coccari, Jr, SVP, and Chief Development Officer (beg 3/20)
  • $294,189:  Adrian P Mollo, SVP, GC/Asst Secretary (beginning 3/2019)
  • $275,426:  David C Damond, SVP, CFO/Asst Treasurer
  • $259,312:  Kelly Ernst, SVP, Market Impact
  • $253,111:  Nicholas M DiFranza, SVP and Chief Tech Officer
  • $247,507:  Darlene R Slaughter, VP and Chief PO (beginning 2/2019)
  • $239,535:  Cynthia H Rahman, SVP, Chief MO (beginning 1/2019)
  • $233,604:  Deirdre Maloney, VP, Human Resources
  • $228,236:  Florenda H Newton, VP, Corporate Engagement
  • $217,850:  David J Hampton, II, SVP and Chief Development Officer (end 2/20)
  • $215,383:  Alison A Spera, VP, Market Impact

The 14 most highly compensated employees received $3.6 million or an average compensation of nearly $260,000.  8 of the 14 (57%) most highly compensated employees are female while 6 (43%) are male. The Board – made up of 20 independent trustees – is comprised of 10 females and 12 males (note: 22 are listed on the Form 990 due to timing differences; the Form 990 does not report gender, determination was made based on name and google searches).

The March of Dimes provided gross up payments or tax indemnification.

26 independent contractors received more than $100,000 in compensation. The 5 most highly compensated independent contractors were reported to be:

  • $2,544,524:  True North, of NY, NY for advertising (compared to $1.8 million in 2019)
  • $1,884,389:  Direct Donor TV, of Bowie, Maryland for development and air time
  • $1,059,388:  Fleishman-Hillard, of St. Louis, MO for social media consulting
  • $   516,188:  Digital Edge, of Staten Island, NY for web development
  • $  498,511:  Home Front Communication, of Washington, DC for communications

As illustrated above, the March of Dimes spent heavily on advertising and promotion.

It is also important to point out the March of Dimes relies on outside fundraisers and consultants and they paid handsomely for these dollars:

  • Infocision Management Corp, of Akron, OH, a telemarketing firm raised $635,631 for March of Dimes; Infocision retained $319,346 netting the March of Dimes $316,285.
  • M & R Strategic Services, of Washington, DC raised $633,407. M & R Strategic Services retained $476,822 netting the March of Dimes $156,585.
  • Edge Direct, LLC, of Baltimore, MD was paid $960,404 for fundraising consulting.

Two firms above – Infocision and M & R raised $1.3 million, retained approximately $800,000 (62%) netting the March of Dimes approximately $500,0000 (38% of revenue raised).

To read the IRS Form 990 (2020), click here.

1 Comment
  1. Robert Woods
    Dec 24 2021

    “2020 was not a great year for the March of Dimes and yet, they continue to endure.” of course they endure — to assure they get huge un-earned salaries — what a scam!

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