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President John Fry’s salary moves up the rankings | The Triangle
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President John Fry’s salary moves up the rankings

Photo by Kasey Shamis | The Triangle

Drexel University President John Fry is in 10th place for the highest paid private college president in the country, according to a recent study from The Chronicle of Higher Education

The Chronicle study looks at the salaries for 313 chief executives at private colleges with expenditures of $100 million or more in 2021. President Fry joins the ranks of the presidents of the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia, New York University, University of Southern California and more. 

In 2022, President Fry’s total compensation was $2,584,592, a 26.9 percent increase since 2021. 

On May 4, 2022, the Drexel Board of Trustees voted unanimously to extend President Fry’s contract by another five years until June 30, 2028.  

“The accolades for John are many,” said Board Chair Richard A. Greenawalt in a press release. “He continues to transform the University, while also navigating the University through a pandemic, creating a more inclusive institution and confronting the many challenges of the rapidly changing higher education landscape. He is the ideal leader to move the University forward successfully in the coming years.”

President Fry’s salary has been steadily on the rise since he first took on his position at Drexel on March 10, 2010. Fry succeeded interim President Celestino Pennoni who was serving as interim president following the death of President Constantine Papadakis. 

President Fry’s compensation first reached $2 million in 2019 at $2,024,282. His salary dropped in 2020 to $1.2 million but quickly surpassed his pre-pandemic numbers at $2,037,295 in 2021.  

Currently, President Fry is the longest serving university president in Philadelphia.  

In 2021, President Fry told the Philadelphia Inquirer he was unsure about his future and “that 2021-22 could be his last full year at Drexel.” 

“The art of this game is you don’t overstay your welcome,” Fry said to the Inquirer. “I’m starting my 12th year. I’ll finish that out and who knows beyond that, but not a whole lot more. It’s time for the natural cycle of change.”

The latest available financial information on President Fry’s salary is 2022. Below is the president’s salary since he first took his position at Drexel. 

2022 – $2,584,592 

2021 – $2,037,295

2020 – $1,204,239

2019 – $2,024,282

2018 – $1,094,748

2017 – $1,343,353

2016 – $1,899,337

2015 – $1,267,218

2014 – $1,271,335

2013 – $1,058,504

2012 – $1,021,739 

2011 – $292,514