Alex Philippidis Senior News Editor Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News

Capitalism appears to be alive and well in academia.

While not on par with most senior biotech executives, many scientists who run major institutes and academic centers ain’t doin’ so bad. In fact, a case could be made that they are not being paid enough. After all, these prestigious medical institutes and laboratories, which employ large groups of scientists from diverse disciplines, carry out many of the same research activities as biotech and pharma companies. They announce numerous medical breakthroughs and discover potential new drug leads. Their scientific and commercial value is validated by the many life science firms from all over the globe who choose to partner with them.

Below are the salaries for chief executives of independent nonprofit research institutes during the period covered by the most recent publicly-available information. As a result, in some cases the listed chief executives have been succeeded by others; such leadership changes are detailed in footnotes. FY denotes Fiscal Year, which ends June 30 unless otherwise specified. CY denotes Calendar Year.

#20. Michael A. Luther, Ph.D.

President, David H. Murdock Research Institute

$240,601 in FY 2010–2011

#19. Kenneth Stuart, Ph.D.

Founder; President, 1976–2012; President Emeritus, 2012–present1, Seattle BioMed (Seattle Biomedical Research Institute)

$308,150 in FY 2010–2011

#18. Bertold Sakmann, M.D., Ph.D.

Inaugural Scientific Director and Research Group Leader, Digital Neuroanatomy, Max Planck Florida Institute

Emeritus Scientific Member, Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology

$335,592 in CY 2010

#17. Leroy (Lee) Hood, M.D., Ph.D.

President and Co-Founder, Institute of Systems Biology

$382,844 in CY 2010

#16. Charles P. Emerson, Jr., Ph.D.

Director and Senior Scientist, Boston Biomedical Research Institute

$401,136 in FY 2010–2011

#15. Richard M. Myers, Ph.D.

President and Director, HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology

$418,101 in CY 2010

#14. Richard A. Houghten, Ph.D.

Founder, President and CEO, Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies

$472,407 in FY 2010–2011

#13. Richard Woychik, Ph.D.

President and CEO2, The Jackson Laboratory

$541,735 in FY ending May 31, 2011

#12. Thomas J. Hudson, M.D., Ph.D.

President and Scientific Director, Ontario Institute for Cancer Research

$546,805.99 in CY 20113

#11. Christopher J. Elias, M.D.

President and CEO, 2000-20124, PATH

$556,287 in CY 2010 (filed Oct. 13, 2011)

#10. Leland (Lee) H. Hartwell, Ph.D.

President and Director, 1997–20105, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

$634,183 in FY 2010–2011

#9. J. Craig Venter, Ph.D.

Founder, Chairman, and President, J. Craig Venter Institute

$645,929 in CY 2010

#8. Bruce Stillman, Ph.D.

President, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

$751,839 in CY 2010

#7. Eric S. Lander, Ph.D.

Founding Director and Director of the Genome Biology Program, Broad Institute

$818,876 in FY 2010–2011

#6. R. Sanders Williams, M.D.

President, J. David Gladstone Institutes

$862,505 in CY 2010

#5. William R. Brody, M.D., Ph.D.

President, The Salk Institute for Biological Studies

$951,743 in FY 2010–2011

#4. Jeffrey M. Trent, Ph.D.

President & Scientific Director, Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen)

$1,063,599 in FY 2009–2010

#3. Robert Tjian, Ph.D.

President, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

$1,143,070 in FY ending Aug. 31, 2011

#2. Richard A. Lerner, M.D.

Director of predecessor organization, 1987–1991; President and CEO, 1991–2012; Researcher, Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology, 2012-present,The Scripps Research Institute

$1,370,328 in FY ending Sept. 30, 2010

#1. John C. Reed, M.D., Ph.D.

CEO, Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute

$1,476,406 in FY 2010–2011

1 Succeeded as president by Alan Aderem, Ph.D., as of Jan. 1, 2012.
2 Succeeded by Edison Liu, M.D., as president and CEO on Jan. 2, 2012. Dr. Woychik joined the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences as deputy director
3 Converted from Canadian $534,546.60 as of Sept. 20. Source of 2011 salary is Province of Ontario, “Public Sector Salary Disclosure 2012 (Disclosure for 2011)”:
4 Succeeded by Steve Davis as president and CEO in June, 2012. Dr. Elias joined the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as president of its Global Development Program.
5 Succeeded by Lawrence Corey, M.D., as president and director on Jan. 1, 2011. Dr. Hartwell joined the faculty of Arizona State University, where he established and co-directs the Center for Sustainable Health at ASU’s Biodesign Institute; and is ASU’s second Virginia G. Piper Chair of Personalized Medicine.
6 Succeeded by Michael A. Marletta, Ph.D., as president and CEO on Jan. 1, 2012.

U.S. salaries are included within the Form 990 filed with the Internal Revenue Service and made public through

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