NJ Superintendent Salaries Shot Up After Murphy Lifted Christie’s Cap

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on facebook
Share on twitter

The top job in a school district is no easy lift. Superintendents are essentially CEO’s of businesses beset by labor union politics, budget problems, angry parents, and tantruming children, beholden to a wide variety of stakeholders, and on call 24/7. In New Jersey, where local property taxes, at least in wealthier districts, comprise the bulk of revenue, they’re often targets of whole communities. So they deserve fair compensation, for sure, but how much is enough?

This quandary has rumbled the Garden State, especially when, in 2010, then-Governor Chris Christie set a superintendent salary cap  of $150K per year to $175K (depending on district size, with exceptions for Abbott/SDA districts, county districts, and those with enrollment over 10,000). As a result, some superintendents started fleeing to greener pastures in New York and Pennsylvania. South Orange-Maplewood Superintendent Brian Osbourne’s resignation made the Wall Street Journal when he left his district and his $167,500 (capped) salary to take up a new post in New Rochelle, NY for an uncapped $265,000 a year.

After the cap was overturned by Gov. Murphy in 2019, school boards immediately started raising salaries, mostly by converting annual “merit bonuses” (a way of bypassing the cap) to pensionable income. For instance, Demarest’s superintendent Michael Fox saw his salary go from $154K in 2018 to $228K in 2021, a 48.4% increase.

Here are the salaries of the 25 most highly-paid superintendents in New Jersey, courtesy of nj.com:

Frank Gargiulo: Hudson County Schools Of Technology, $300,000

Mark Finkelstein: Educational Services Commission Of New Jersey, $300,000

Leigh Byron: Trenton Stem-To-Civics Charter School, $300,000

Roger Leon: Newark, $290,050

Teresa Segarra: Maria L. Varisco-Rogers Charter School, $281,450

Eileen Shafer: Paterson, $267,900

Victor Valeski: East Brunswick Township, $261,000

Aubrey Johnson: New Brunswick, $257,405

David Aderhold: West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional, $256,418

Charles Sampson: Freehold Regional, $255,000

David Roman: Perth Amboy, $252,708

David Miceli: New Providence, $248,828

Henry Poteat: Winslow Township, $248,466

Silvia Abbato: Union City, $248,331

Michael Lasusa: Chatham, $247,832

Carol Birnbohm: Lenape Regional, $244,686

Christine Burton: Millburn Township, $244,664

Matthew Murphy: Ramsey, $244,007

Scott Feder: South Brunswick, $242,267

James Jencarelli: Morris Hills Regional, $241,129

Richard Tomko: Belleville, $240,439




Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *