Local public company CEO pay down nearly 3%; Altria boss tops list at $16M

2023 CEO Pay Graphic 003

The region’s top 21 public company CEOs saw an average decline in their overall compensation of around 2 percent. (BizSense graphic file)

It was a year of ups and downs when it came to CEO pay at the Richmond region’s publicly traded companies in 2022.

The average total compensation package paid to the heads of the area’s largest 21 public companies was valued at $5.69 million last year, down 2.8 percent from the previous year, according to a BizSense analysis of the companies’ recently filed proxy statements.

On the downside, 11 of the 21 CEOs received less in total pay last year compared to 2021.

Of those 11, the steepest decline was a 44 percent drop for George Freeman, head of tobacco company Universal Corp. Freeman’s total pay declined from $5.17 million in 2021 to $2.86 million last year, a 44 percent decline.

The decrease was due largely to a sizable decline in the value of Freeman’s pension and other deferred compensation earnings. Freeman’s non-equity cash incentive award payments also were down for the year.

Another noticeable drop was in the pay of Doug Pertz, head of armored car giant Brink’s. His total package fell nearly 44 percent from $11.4 million in 2021 to $6.4 million last year.

Pertz’s drop was fueled largely by a drop in the value of stock awards he received. In 2022 he was granted $3.85 million in stock awards compared to $8.9 million in 2021. Pertz’s base salary also fell from $1 million in 2021 to $837,000 in 2022.

Others who saw a decline in pay for the year – all for varying reasons – were: ASGN’s Ted Hanson (-11.79%); Dominion Energy’s Robert Blue (-16.74%); Owens & Minor’s Edward Pesicka (-18.69%); Dynex Capital’s Byron Boston (-5.48%); Markel’s Tom Gayner (-13.69%); Tredegar’s John Steitz (-5.64%); NewMarket’s Thomas Gottwald (-15.35%); LL Flooring’s Charles Tyson (-6.21%); and Village Bank’s Jay Hendricks (-5.47%).

CEO/Highest Paid Exec. Company (Ticker) 2022 Total Comp.  2021 Total Comp. % Change
William Gifford Jr. Altria (MO) $16,199,700 $12,626,972 28.29%
William Nash CarMax (KMX) $13,689,123 $9,891,893 38.39%
Thomas McInerney Genworth Financial (GNW) $9,448,366 $8,499,379 11.17%
George Holm Performance Food Group (PFGC) $8,660,511 $8,228,550 5.25%
Theodore Hanson ASGN (ASGN) $8,420,365 $9,546,278 -11.79%
Robert Blue Dominion Energy (D) $6,794,985 $8,161,083 -16.74%
Justin Knight Apple Hospitality REIT (APLE) $6,736,235 $6,092,030 10.57%
Arie Kotler ARKO (ARKO) $6,683,793 $6,375,923 4.83%
Douglas Pertz Brink’s (BCO) $6,407,543 $11,405,920 -43.82%
Edward Pesicka Owens & Minor (OMI) $6,245,259 $7,680,578 -18.69%
Bryon Boston Dynex Capital (DX) $4,230,683 $4,476,138 -5.48%
Thomas Gayner Markel (MKL) $3,991,434 $4,624,603 -13.69%
Michael Kehoe Kinsale Capital Group (KNSL) $3,783,912 $3,028,861 24.93%
John Steitz Tredegar (TG) $3,465,784 $3,673,092 -5.64%
John Asbury Atlantic Union Bankshares (AUB) $3,326,195 $3,193,289 4.16%
George Freeman III Universal Corp. (UVV) $2,861,961 $5,171,861 -44.66%
Gregory Trepp Hamilton Beach Brands (HBB) $2,709,759 $2,698,811 0.41%
Thomas Gottwald New Market (NEU) $2,090,768 $2,469,929 -15.35%
Charles Tyson LL Flooring (LL) $2,039,043 $2,174,088 -6.21%
Thomas Cherry C&F Financial (CFFI) $1,160,058 $1,157,133 0.25%
James Hendricks Jr. Village Bank and Trust Financial (VBFC) $600,930 $635,688 -5.47%

There was still plenty of upside for the other half of the group.

Topping the list was Altria CEO William Gifford, whose 2022 pay package was valued at $16.19 million, up 28 percent from the previous year.

Gifford’s total included a $1.3 million base salary, $6.5 million in stock awards, $2.58 million from the company’s annual incentive plan, plus $73,000 worth of personal use of the company’s private jet. The biggest boost Gifford received in 2022 was $5.57 million from the company’s long-term incentive plan. That line item was up from $0 in 2021.

The biggest jump in 2022 was CarMax CEO William Nash, whose compensation rose 38 percent to $13.68 million, up from $9.89 million. The increase was driven by Nash’s $7.49 million in stock option awards, plus a $1.23 million base salary, $1.36 million in stock awards, and $133,000 worth of personal use of the corporate jet.

Gifford was third in the rankings on last year’s list. He leapfrogged to the top by earning more overall than Nash, who was at number two last year, and former CarLotz CEO Michael Bor, who led the pack last year but is no longer listed due to his departure from CarLotz.

Altogether, the 21 CEOs on the list received a combined $119.54 million in total compensation in 2022, down from $121.8 million the previous year.

Not included on this list is Medalist Diversified REIT, a Richmond-based publicly traded firm whose executives are not paid a salary by the company directly, but rather through a third-party management firm. That setup has been the subject of recent scrutiny from some Medalist’s shareholders.

BizSense reporter Jack Jacobs contributed to this report.

2023 CEO Pay Graphic 003

The region’s top 21 public company CEOs saw an average decline in their overall compensation of around 2 percent. (BizSense graphic file)

It was a year of ups and downs when it came to CEO pay at the Richmond region’s publicly traded companies in 2022.

The average total compensation package paid to the heads of the area’s largest 21 public companies was valued at $5.69 million last year, down 2.8 percent from the previous year, according to a BizSense analysis of the companies’ recently filed proxy statements.

On the downside, 11 of the 21 CEOs received less in total pay last year compared to 2021.

Of those 11, the steepest decline was a 44 percent drop for George Freeman, head of tobacco company Universal Corp. Freeman’s total pay declined from $5.17 million in 2021 to $2.86 million last year, a 44 percent decline.

The decrease was due largely to a sizable decline in the value of Freeman’s pension and other deferred compensation earnings. Freeman’s non-equity cash incentive award payments also were down for the year.

Another noticeable drop was in the pay of Doug Pertz, head of armored car giant Brink’s. His total package fell nearly 44 percent from $11.4 million in 2021 to $6.4 million last year.

Pertz’s drop was fueled largely by a drop in the value of stock awards he received. In 2022 he was granted $3.85 million in stock awards compared to $8.9 million in 2021. Pertz’s base salary also fell from $1 million in 2021 to $837,000 in 2022.

Others who saw a decline in pay for the year – all for varying reasons – were: ASGN’s Ted Hanson (-11.79%); Dominion Energy’s Robert Blue (-16.74%); Owens & Minor’s Edward Pesicka (-18.69%); Dynex Capital’s Byron Boston (-5.48%); Markel’s Tom Gayner (-13.69%); Tredegar’s John Steitz (-5.64%); NewMarket’s Thomas Gottwald (-15.35%); LL Flooring’s Charles Tyson (-6.21%); and Village Bank’s Jay Hendricks (-5.47%).

CEO/Highest Paid Exec. Company (Ticker) 2022 Total Comp.  2021 Total Comp. % Change
William Gifford Jr. Altria (MO) $16,199,700 $12,626,972 28.29%
William Nash CarMax (KMX) $13,689,123 $9,891,893 38.39%
Thomas McInerney Genworth Financial (GNW) $9,448,366 $8,499,379 11.17%
George Holm Performance Food Group (PFGC) $8,660,511 $8,228,550 5.25%
Theodore Hanson ASGN (ASGN) $8,420,365 $9,546,278 -11.79%
Robert Blue Dominion Energy (D) $6,794,985 $8,161,083 -16.74%
Justin Knight Apple Hospitality REIT (APLE) $6,736,235 $6,092,030 10.57%
Arie Kotler ARKO (ARKO) $6,683,793 $6,375,923 4.83%
Douglas Pertz Brink’s (BCO) $6,407,543 $11,405,920 -43.82%
Edward Pesicka Owens & Minor (OMI) $6,245,259 $7,680,578 -18.69%
Bryon Boston Dynex Capital (DX) $4,230,683 $4,476,138 -5.48%
Thomas Gayner Markel (MKL) $3,991,434 $4,624,603 -13.69%
Michael Kehoe Kinsale Capital Group (KNSL) $3,783,912 $3,028,861 24.93%
John Steitz Tredegar (TG) $3,465,784 $3,673,092 -5.64%
John Asbury Atlantic Union Bankshares (AUB) $3,326,195 $3,193,289 4.16%
George Freeman III Universal Corp. (UVV) $2,861,961 $5,171,861 -44.66%
Gregory Trepp Hamilton Beach Brands (HBB) $2,709,759 $2,698,811 0.41%
Thomas Gottwald New Market (NEU) $2,090,768 $2,469,929 -15.35%
Charles Tyson LL Flooring (LL) $2,039,043 $2,174,088 -6.21%
Thomas Cherry C&F Financial (CFFI) $1,160,058 $1,157,133 0.25%
James Hendricks Jr. Village Bank and Trust Financial (VBFC) $600,930 $635,688 -5.47%

There was still plenty of upside for the other half of the group.

Topping the list was Altria CEO William Gifford, whose 2022 pay package was valued at $16.19 million, up 28 percent from the previous year.

Gifford’s total included a $1.3 million base salary, $6.5 million in stock awards, $2.58 million from the company’s annual incentive plan, plus $73,000 worth of personal use of the company’s private jet. The biggest boost Gifford received in 2022 was $5.57 million from the company’s long-term incentive plan. That line item was up from $0 in 2021.

The biggest jump in 2022 was CarMax CEO William Nash, whose compensation rose 38 percent to $13.68 million, up from $9.89 million. The increase was driven by Nash’s $7.49 million in stock option awards, plus a $1.23 million base salary, $1.36 million in stock awards, and $133,000 worth of personal use of the corporate jet.

Gifford was third in the rankings on last year’s list. He leapfrogged to the top by earning more overall than Nash, who was at number two last year, and former CarLotz CEO Michael Bor, who led the pack last year but is no longer listed due to his departure from CarLotz.

Altogether, the 21 CEOs on the list received a combined $119.54 million in total compensation in 2022, down from $121.8 million the previous year.

Not included on this list is Medalist Diversified REIT, a Richmond-based publicly traded firm whose executives are not paid a salary by the company directly, but rather through a third-party management firm. That setup has been the subject of recent scrutiny from some Medalist’s shareholders.

BizSense reporter Jack Jacobs contributed to this report.

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Connie Galloway
Connie Galloway
1 year ago

I wonder if there will be a woman on this list before I die.

Stephen Weisensale
Stephen Weisensale
1 year ago

Additionally, there are no photos but I imagine they would be overwhelmingly pale if there were.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago

Actually, if you were paying attention, you’d see that in many of the best and most innovative companies, the CEOs are increasingly looking sort of coffee or tea-colored and the Pale-Faces are not as ubiquitous as they once were. And those names are often getting longer, more Hindu sounding often-times. Meanwhile, Cigarette companies tend to be slowly dying, if spewing out lots of Free Cash Flow — if they put in someone that looked different just for the sake of looks, or gender identity, it would not be long before the professional complainers would accuse the board of “setting them… Read more »

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
1 year ago

I don’t know the answer, but speaking for myself, for the last 30+ years, I have railed against corporate America for the same thing. Until I realized, I was part of the problem. My BS was a “soft” degree, not STEM. I was too focused on finding a husband/partner. I did not get my masters because I was sick of school, and I did not want to pay the $40K+ to do something I didn’t want to do. I focused on my income, not my career. I did not want to work 60 hours a week for 30 years. Later… Read more »

Lionel Hutz
Lionel Hutz
1 year ago

I guarantee you that well less than half (and probably < 25%) of these guys have a STEM degree

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
1 year ago
Reply to  Lionel Hutz

I can guarantee that most of them have degrees in Finance, Economics, or Accounting and those are not “soft” degrees – what about a Masters degree & what school did they get their masters from – Wharton, U Penn, Harvard, etc?

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago
Reply to  Lionel Hutz

Well, these aren’t tech companies. Altria is a slowly dying cash flow company, so it is all about Accounting and Finance and Marketing.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago

THIS — if you want to be considered valuable, you need to get valuable skills — getting a degree in complaining is NOT a valuable skill, and learning valuable skills, whether it is automechanics or finance is NOT easy, nor is it fun, nor is it a cheap self-flatter.

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
1 year ago
Reply to  Shawn Harper

i personally am not complaining – I love my life! I am just pointing out that I made choices in my life that impacted why I am not a CEO making $16 million a year.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago

You may be part of THIS “problem”, but, frankly, I think society would be better off if less of us forced ourselves to be things that we are not and just accepted not only the hand that we are dealt, but also the way we want to play them. The first article I ever saw that even BEGAN to address this issue regarding Women in particular (and, regarding women, it is a Third Rail in ways that it is not for men) was about 10 years ago in the Atlantic, I think, that basically dared to say that a big… Read more »

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago

Well, considering that women are half the population, maybe a few more should look in the mirror if they are wondering why they are not in positions of power instead of pointing fingers all the time. I mean, c’mon, this is NOT a story about Feminism, this is a story about nicotine and branding and human weakness and the desire to feel better, or at least more focused, which I am convinced is the real thing that nicotine is all about. Not saying that there is anything wrong with women, indeed, I like women that are comfortable being women and… Read more »

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
1 year ago
Reply to  Shawn Harper

Shawn – quit while you are ahead…….frankly this post is off the mark and feels like a pat on the head. But if you are trying to beat my -65 ratio – go for it!

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago

Hey, I never even get pats on the head!

I am not off the mark — more ahead of the curve on understanding social issues — raised by a feminist, and two left-leaning liberals, BTW.

Dana Dodge
Dana Dodge
1 year ago

No mention that it’s 20 white guys, one man of color and NO women! So… not of interest to your publisher, nor your reders?

CM Reynolds
CM Reynolds
1 year ago
Reply to  Dana Dodge

Stop assuming their gender and race!! Have you asked any of them how they identify? Have you asked any of them what their pronouns are?! Didn’t think so.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago
Reply to  Dana Dodge

Go get a degree in selling nicotine to young people, and you can solve this horrible problem!!!

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
1 year ago

It appears that most (if not all) of the reductions in pay was due to the stock value when the market took a dump in 2022. Their 2023 comp will appear huge for the opposite reason, the 2023 market is way up (so far)

Jeff Miller
Jeff Miller
1 year ago

Would like to see someone seriously cover the obvious diversity/representation issues here and not worry so much about the totally irrelevant “most zeros in the bank account” vanity contest. Thanks.

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeff Miller

How do you propose to fix the “obvious diversity problem?” You first Jeff – YOU give up your well paying job to a woman and/or person of color. YOU give up your next promotion to a woman or person of color. If you are not doing this right now – then you are just virtue signaling – and are part of the problem.

Sally Wannabaker
Sally Wannabaker
1 year ago

Are the rich white men so upset by these comments that they’re coming by and downvoting them? I guess money and privilege can’t protect you from the sting of the truth.

Mike Conrad
Mike Conrad
1 year ago

The truth is that if you prepared properly and were willing to work 80hr weeks for 30 years you might appear on a list like this one day. But you didn’t, wouldn’t, and can’t. But most of us are in the same boat, so don’t feel too bad.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago
Reply to  Mike Conrad

It’s generally only high testosterone people who are willing to fill those roles, and those people often don’t make the best mothers.

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
1 year ago
Reply to  Shawn Harper

Shawn – please stop.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago

Why? Got a refutation?

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago

Let me tell you something — none of the men who are downvoting are “rich” — rich men don’t waste time they could be spending on their Yachts or becoming Philanthropists posting or downvoting — if anything, they BUY media outlets and control the editorial content.

Me, I hate whiners — it’s the thing I whine about the most.

CM Reynolds
CM Reynolds
1 year ago

We need to start a gofundme for poor Jay Hendricks. I honestly don’t know how he gets by. I wander whether he’ll have beans or ramen tonight?

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago
Reply to  CM Reynolds

I am not sure anyone is saying that anyone needs to feel sorry for anyone in the article.

Indeed, it is in the COMMENTS that there seem to be a bunch of Poor, Unappreciated Me people coveting this guy’s money, whether it is deserved or not — the politics of envy is rife in Richmond.

Victoria Woodhull
Victoria Woodhull
1 year ago
Reply to  Shawn Harper

Shawn, I totally AGREE with you on THIS post! Envy is emotionally destructive.

Shawn Harper
Shawn Harper
1 year ago

Victoria NO ONE is allowed to agree with me!! It will just make me nervous!