University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler is among the nation’s highest paid public college presidents, the Chronicle of Higher Education reported.

 

Kaler, who earned $610,000 last year, ranked 29th out of 227 public colleges nationwide. While the median salary of college presidents is nearly $430,000, two earned at least $1 million, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education’s data.

 

His salary also puts him in the top-half of Big Ten presidents, Minnesota Public Radio reported.

 

“The way I look at it is, these are large complex jobs,” Kaler told the Star Tribune. “It’s a $3.5 billion business, and I’m CEO of it. I’m paid in line with people who have similar jobs.”

 

Kaler, who has been president since 2011, was given a 2.5 percent pay raise and a five-year contract extension by the Board of Regents last year, the Star Tribune reported.

 

But Kaler is not the highest paid University employee. Gophers head football coach Jerry Kill made $2.1 million last year, and Gophers head men’s basketball coach Richard Pitino makes an average of $1.2 million a year, according to the Star Tribune.