Home » UK extends Capilouto’s contract by three years; increases salary 47.7% to $790,000

UK extends Capilouto’s contract by three years; increases salary 47.7% to $790,000

Contract extended until June 30, 2021

LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 24, 2016) — The University of Kentucky Board of Trustees today extended the contract of President Eli Capilouto for three years as part of a move to continue to “invest in the future” and the “undeniable progress” UK has made in the last five years.

Eli Capilouto
Eli Capilouto

“We are Kentucky’s indispensable institution. I believe we have an indispensable leader,” said UK Board Chairman Britt Brockman. “We have made undeniable progress. But there is still much to do. Now is not the time to be guilty of ‘dreaming too little dreams.’”

Specifically, the board considered changes to Capilouto’s current contract that include:

  • An extension to June 30, 2021. Capilouto’s current contract expires June 30, 2018.
  • An increase in his base salary to $790,000, effective Jan. 1, 2016. His current base salary is $535,500. The increase reflects a review of presidential salaries at other universities in the Southeastern Conference and, more specifically, the five presidents hired most recently. Under terms of the new contract, Capilouto will be eligible, going forward, for the same raises afforded to UK faculty and staff.
  • A new longevity incentive equal to Capilouto’s approximate base salary in 2020-2021. The new contract also would remove provisions related to performance bonuses and the use of a university-owned vehicle.

The contract changes come after a comprehensive review last year of Capilouto and the beginning of a new, five-year Strategic Plan, Brockman said. “We are at a critical juncture — a point at which vision, the ability to execute and implement, and continuity are essential.”

Brockman pointed out that five SEC presidents have been hired in 2015 and 2016. Four of the five were provosts, while Capilouto has five years of experience as a president. And, Brockman said three of those institutions are far less complex, as they don’t have a large academic medical center on their campuses, and the other two are more similar in scope to UK. Yet, Brockman said the contract proposal would place Capilouto’s compensation at less than the 75th percentile for those hires.

“We exist in a marketplace,” Brockman said to board members. “This contract proposal reflects that fact.”

Brockman said Capilouto’s record of the last five years, since beginning at UK in July 2011, represents a period of incredible progress, including:

  • Nearly $2 billion in campus construction, including new residence and dining halls, as well as classrooms and research facilities. The vast majority of that transformation has taken place with university resources, such as philanthropy, rather than state funding.
  • Record growth of students, with enrollment now of more than 30,000 and increased applications of more than 70 percent.
  • Near record graduation rates, record retention numbers and all-time highs for diversity and student academic quality, as reflected by UK’s place as one of the top 10 public institutions in the country for numbers of National Merit, Achievement and Hispanic Scholars students.
  • A more than doubling of student scholarships and financial aid, which does not have to be repaid, to $117 million this coming academic year, reflecting UK’s focus on access, affordability and student success.
  • Significant increases in sponsored research, particularly in areas that most impact the state, such as cancer, heart disease and energy.
  • Annual patient discharges at UK HealthCare of nearly 40,000 and continued expansion of affiliations across the state and region that bring high-tech, sophisticated care closer to more Kentuckians in their homes.
  • Nearly $200 million in annual giving for the first time, and doubling of financial gifts to UK in the last four years.

“We have every right to be proud. But we have no place to be satisfied,” Brockman said of the record of achievement over the last five years. “We still have transformational dreams to make real, promises to be made and kept, potential to be met.”

Most significantly, Brockman cited the university’s five-year Strategic Plan, adopted by the board in October 2015. The plan calls for substantial increases between now and 2020 in graduation and retention rates, diversity and inclusivity, and research that impacts the commonwealth. And, at the same time, Brockman said more is being expected of the university in terms of performance for the state’s investment and challenges such as increased competition for students.

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