This Is the Highest-Paid CEO in America

He's Discovery's David Zaslav, and he's pulling down $156.1M
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted May 26, 2015 11:59 AM CDT
Updated May 30, 2015 7:00 PM CDT
This Is the Highest-Paid CEO in America
Top: David Zaslav, Discovery; Les Moonves, CBS; Philippe Dauman, Viacom; Robert Iger, Disney; Marissa Mayer, Yahoo. Bottom: Leonard Schleifer, Regeneron Pharma.; Marc Benioff, Salesforce; Jeffrey Leiden, Vertex Pharma.; Brian Roberts, Comcast; Jeff Bewkes, Time Warner.   (AP Photo)

You probably haven't heard of the best-paid guy running a boardroom in America: David Zaslav is CEO of Discovery Communications, and he is far and away the winner, with some $156.1 million in compensation last year—more than four times what he made the previous year and more than $100 million more than runner-up Les Moonves of CBS. Zaslav has overseen a fivefold hike in Discovery's stock since 2008, and increased viewership with the likes of Deadliest Catch and other reality shows. "He's a dynamic leader at the helm of a company in a very fast-changing industry," says a portfolio manager. The AP takes a look at the top 10 best-paid CEOs, noting that the list is dominated by media companies:

  1. Moonves, $54.4 million, down 17%
  2. Philippe Dauman, Viacom, $44.3 million, up 19%
  3. Robert Iger, Walt Disney, $43.7 million, up 27%
  4. Marissa Mayer, Yahoo, $42.1 million, up 69%
  5. Leonard Schleifer, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, $42 million, up 16%
  6. Marc Benioff,, $39.9 million, up 27%
  7. Jeffrey Leiden, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, $36.6 million, up 179%
  8. Brian Roberts, Comcast, $33 million, up 5%
  9. Jeffrey Bewkes, Time Warner, $32.7 million, unchanged
The AP has an interactive graphic here. (Meanwhile, CEO pay hit a pretty big milestone earlier this month.)

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