The 15 highest-paid CEOs in wireline

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Highest paid executivesWho are the highest paid CEOs in the wireline segment of the telecom industry? This week, we detail the salary and compensation rates of chief executives at 15 publicly traded telcos.

While the top-paid executives likely aren't much of a surprise--Verizon's (NYSE: VZ) Lowell McAdam and AT&T's (NYSE: T) Randall Stephenson sit in the top chairs of America's telco duopoly--the changes in compensation rates between 2011 and 2010 are sometimes striking.

McAdam, for example, saw his total compensation, including salary, bonuses, stock awards and other compensation, leap from $7.2 million in 2010 to $23.1 million in 2011, in part because of his promotion from COO of Verizon Wireless to CEO of Verizon Communications.  

Meanwhile, Stephenson's total compensation dropped precipitously, from $27.3 million in 2010 to $22.01 million in 2011--no thanks to the failed AT&T/T-Mobile merger, for which $2 million was docked from his compensation package.

Why detail 15 CEOs? The salaries of those leading smaller competitive telcos and service providers tell a story of companies struggling--or climbing--a path fraught with risk, including the need to spend and build improved networks and services as technology and consumer demand changes.

Eric Yeaman of Hawaiian Telcom (Nasdaq: HCOM), for example, saw his total compensation shrink dramatically in 2011 as the carrier fought its way out of bankruptcy, receiving no bonus or stock awards this year (compensation that had totaled $4.76 million in 2010).

And, as FairPoint Communications (Nasdaq: FRP) climbed out of its bankruptcy and began to meet the broadband goals laid out for it by the northern New England states it serves, CEO Paul Sunu's compensation grew from 2010's almost-flat salary of $775,901 to $4.25 million in total compensation last year.

Take a look at our 15 highest-paid CEOs in 2011. Salary and compensation data comes from publicly available filings made to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. And don't forget to check out our sister publication FierceWireless' 10 highest paid executives in wireless feature, for compensation data from the heads of Ericsson (Nasdaq: ERIC), Motorola Solutions (NYSE: MSI), and more.

James A. Hyde, Lumos Networks

Total compensation (2011): $1.03 million
Total compensation (2010): $2.14 million
Salary: $400,000
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $627,094
Duration with Company: Since 2009 (also remains CEO of NTELOS since the companies separated in 2011)

James Hyde, Lumos Networks

Eric K. Yeaman, Hawaiian Telcom

Total compensation (2011): $1.29 million
Total compensation (2010): $6.72 million
Salary: $696,000
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $594,000
Duration with Company: Since 2008

Eric Yeaman, Hawaiian Telcom

Steven C. Oldham, SureWest

Total compensation (2011): $1.57 million
Total compensation (2010): $1.28 million
Salary: $470,000
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $1.10 million
Duration with Company: Since 2006

Steve Oldham, SureWest

Ben Verwaayen, Alcatel-Lucent

Total compensation (2011): $2.25 million
Total compensation (2010): $2.39 million
Salary: $1.2 million
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $1.05 million
Duration with Company: Since 2008

Ben Verwaayen, Alcatel-Lucent

David A. Wittwer, TDS Telecom

Total compensation (2011): $2.29 million
Total compensation (2010): $1.9 million
Salary: $533,000
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $1.76 million
Duration with Company: Since 1983

David Wittwer, TDS Telecom

Ian Paul Livingston, BT

Total compensation (2011): £2.36 million ($3.8 million)
Total compensation (2010): £2.1 million ($3.38 million)
Salary: £892,000 ($1.44 million)
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): £1.46 million ($2.36 million)
Duration with Company: Since 2008

Ian Paul Livingston, BT

Paul H. Sunu, FairPoint

Total compensation (2011): $4.25 million
Total compensation (2010): $775,901
Salary: $750,000
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $3.5 million
Duration with Company: Since 2010

Paul Sunu, FairPoint

John F. Cassidy, Cincinnati Bell

Total compensation (2011): $6.06 million
Total compensation (2010): $8.56 million
Salary: $681.250
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $5.38 million
Duration with Company: Since 2002

John Cassidy, Cincinnati Bell

Maggie Wilderotter, Frontier

Total compensation (2011): $6.72 million
Total compensation (2010): $8.58 million
Salary: $1 million
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $5.72 million
Duration with Company: Since 2004

Maggie Wilderotter, Frontier

Glen F. Post III, CenturyLink

Total compensation (2011): $8.55 million
Total compensation (2010): $14.5 million
Salary: $1.02 million
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $7.53 million
Duration with Company: Since 1982

Glen Post, CenturyLink

George A. Cope, Bell Canada

Total compensation (2011): $9.6 million
Total compensation (2010): $4.26 million
Salary: $3.87 million
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $5.73 million
Duration with Company: Since 2005

George Cope, Bell Canada

Jeff Gardner, Windstream

Total compensation (2011): $9.78 million
Total compensation (2010): $7.32 million
Salary: $991,000
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $8.79 million
Duration with Company: Since 2005

Jeff Gardner, Windstream

Dan Hesse, Sprint

Total compensation (2011): $11.88 million
Total compensation (2010): $9.06 million
Salary: $1.2 million
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $10.7 million
Duration with Company: Since 2007

Dan Hesse, Sprint

Randall Stephenson, AT&T

Total compensation (2011): $22.01 million
Total compensation (2010): $27.3 million
Salary: $1.55 million
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $20.46 million
Duration with Company: Since 2007

Randall Stephenson, AT&T

Lowell McAdam, Verizon

Total compensation (2011): $23.1 million
Total compensation (2010): $7.2 million (as COO of Verizon Wireless)
Salary: $1.4 million
Other Compensation (stock awards, bonuses, etc.): $21.7 million
Duration with Company: Since 2000

Lowell McAdam, Verizon

 

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