British Columbia

Sharing almost $5.3M, these are B.C.'s highest-paid public executives

The B.C. government has released its annual list of the province's highest paid public sector employees, with executives from Powerex, UBC and BC Hydro holding the top three spots.

Powerex, UBC and BC Hydro bosses lead top-tier earners for 2018-2019

UBC president Santa Ono ranked 2nd on the list of B.C's top earners, drawing $601,772 in salary, benefits and other compensation. (UBC)

The B.C. government has released its annual list of the province's highest paid public-sector employees, with executives from Powerex, UBC and BC Hydro holding the top three spots.  

The Ministry of Finance said it discloses executive compensation to give the public "a clear, concise description of the link between pay and performance for senior management and executive employees in key decision-making positions across the provincial public sector."

The disclosure requirements apply to more than 120 of B.C.'s public sector employers, including the public service, Crown corporations, post-secondary institutions, research universities and health authorities.

School districts disclose by the end of year.

The highest paid executives in B.C.'s public sector in 2018-19:

​1. Thomas Bechard, president and CEO, Powerex

  • Total compensation: $938,499
  • Salary: $358,800
  • Holdback/bonus: $540,000
  • Benefits: $19,348
  • Pension: $17,512
  • All other compensation: $2,839

2. Santa J. Ono, president and vice-chancellor, University of British Columbia

  • Total compensation: $601,772
  • Salary: $470,000
  • Holdback/bonus: $0
  • Benefits: $11,931
  • Pension: $46,050
  • All other compensation: $73,791

3. Chris O'Riley, president and COO, BC Hydro

  • Total compensation: $554,900
  • Salary: $365,190
  • Holdback/bonus: $34,223
  • Benefits: $29,273​​
  • Pension: $78,516
  • All other compensation: $47,698

4. Brenda Leong, chair, B.C. Securities Commission

  • Total compensation: $502,848
  • Salary: $439,764
  • Holdback/bonus: $0
  • Benefits: $12,754
  • Pension: $43,317
  • All other compensation: $7,013

5. Ken Cretney, president and CEO, B.C. Pavilion Corporation

  • Total compensation: $472,951
  • Salary: $247,797
  • Holdback/bonus: $173,872
  • Benefits: $13,254
  • Pension: $24,408
  • All other compensation: $13,620

6. Nicolas Jimenez, president and CEO, ICBC

  • Total compensation: $468,783
  • Salary: $381,601
  • Holdback/bonus: $0
  • Benefits: $17,443
  • Pension: $67,257
  • All other compensation: $2,482

7. Andrew Szeri, vice-president academic and provost, University of British Columbia

  • Total compensation: $444,415
  • Salary: $395,698
  • Holdback/bonus: $0
  • Benefits: $8,312
  • Pension: $38,620
  • All other compensation: $1,785

8. Andrew Petter, president, Simon Fraser University

  • Total compensation: $439,910
  • Salary: $328,870
  • Holdback/bonus: $33,000
  • Benefits: $9,986
  • Pension: $32,468
  • All other compensation: $35,586

9. James Cassels, president and vice chancellor, University of Victoria

  • Total compensation: $432,979
  • Salary: $378,388
  • Holdback/bonus: $0
  • Benefits: $7,318
  • Pension: $47,138
  • All other compensation: $135

10. Mark Poweska, executive vice-president, operations, BC Hydro

  • Total compensation: $422,746
  • Salary: $285,667
  • Holdback/bonus: $54,303
  • Benefits: $20,484
  • Pension: $61,418
  • All other compensation: $874

The Public Sector Employers Act requires disclosure of an organization's CEO/president and the next four highest ranking or highest paid executives with decision-making authority, earning an annualized base salary of $125,000 or more during a fiscal year.

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