By: Mark Fitzgerald
Craig A. Dubow, president, CEO and chairman of the nation’s largest newspaper company, earned a total compensation package of $7,546,710 in 2007 including a salary and bonus unchanged from the year before, according to the company’s annual meeting proxy filed with regulators late Thursday.
In February 2007, Dubow, 53, signed a new three-year employment calling for a base annual salary of at least $1.2 million. On top of that salary level in 2007, he was granted a bonus of $1.75 million, the same amount he received in 2006.
Dubow received stock options in 2007 that the executive committee valued at approximately $3.6 million, and restricted stock units (RSUs) it valued at about $1.1 million.
In the proxy filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Gannett said it had implemented a reduction in the size of its pool of long-term awards such as stock options and RSUs, “in light of softening economic conditions.” It noted that it had reduced the annual aggregate number of stock options granted from 5.9 million in 2001 to 1.3 million in 2007, including amounts granted in February 2008.
Gannett also said it is also changing the mix of awards to increase the proportion of RSUs, which do not vest for four years and are considered another way of encouraging senior executives to stay with the company.
In contrast to the April annual meetings of The New York Times Co. and Media General Inc., which promise to be lively affairs given the proxy wars between management and dissident shareholders, Gannett’s proxy envisions a quiet session in McLean, Va., on April 30.
The only scheduled business is to retain Ernst & Young as auditors for the next year, and re-elect three directors: Dubow; former Clinton administration Cabinet member Donna Shalala; and public television executive Neal Shapiro.