70% of Highest-Paid Obama White House Staffers Are Men

Michael James | March 15, 2013 | 11:53am EDT
Font Size

President Barack Obama signs the Lilly Ledbetter Equal Pay Restoration Act into law, Jan. 29, 2009. (AP)

(CNSNews.com) – Seventy-percent of the White House staffers who made the top annual salary of $172,200 in 2012 were men and 30 percent were women, according to a White House report on staff compensation.

In addition,  men on the White House staff are paid, on average, $86,260.89 and women are paid, on average, $76,162.65. That means  the average man on the White House staff is paid about $10,098--about 13 percent--more than the average woman.

In Obama's White House, women on average earn only 88.3 percent of what the men earn.

Those numbers conflict with the pay-equity philosophy espoused by the president and his administration.

In signing legislation into law -- the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Restoration Act -- in 2009, which was designed in part to help ensure pay equity between men and women, President Obama said, "So, in signing this bill, I intend to send a clear message: That making our economy work means making sure it works for everyone. That there are no second class citizens in our workplaces, and that it's not just unfair and illegal--but bad for business--to pay someone less because of their gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion or disability."

"And I sign this bill for my daughters, and all those who will come after us, because I want them to grow up in a nation that values their contributions," said Obama, "where there are no limits to their dreams and they have opportunities their mothers and grandmothers never could have imagined."

The current gender disparity in Obama White House compensation is similar to the gender disparity in compensation that was evident in Obama's Senate staff.

In 2008, CNSNews.com reported that Obama, on average, paid women on his Senate staff only 78 percent of what he paid men--with the average man on Obama's Senate staff getting an annual salary of $57,425.00 and the average woman getting an annual salary or $44,953.21.

In 2012, according to a report to Congress on White House staff salaries, there were 466 total paid White House Office employees (there were also two unpaid staffers) -- 234 were women and 232 were men.

The highest annual compensation for any White House staffers in 2012 was $172,200, and a total of 20 people earned that top salary.

Among those 20 employees, 14 were men and 6 were women--making 70 percent of the highest-paid White House staffers men, and 30 percent women. (White House Top 20 Salaries Male and Female.pdf)

Among the men making $172,200 a year at the White House, for example, were Chief of Staff Jacob Lew, Press Secretary Jay Carney, Senior Adviser David Plouffe, Assistant to the President for Economic Policy Eugene Sperling; Director of Speechwriting Jonathan Favreau, and John Brennan, assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism.

The six women making $172,200 were senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, Chief of Staff to the First Lady Christina Tchen; Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy Nancy-Ann DeParle, Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations Alyssa Mastromonaco, Director of the Domestic Policy Council Cecilia Munoz, and Counsel to the President Kathryn Ruemmler. (White House Top 20 Salaries Male and Female.pdf)

For the total 234 women who worked one the White House staff, salaries ranged from $172,200 to $41,000. The average for all of them was $76,162.65. (WH Office Employees, Female, 2012.xls)

For the 232 men on the White House staff, salaries also ranged between $172,200 and $41,000. The average salary for them was $86,260.89. (WH Office Employees, Male, 2012.xls)

On average, in the Obama White House, men make 13.26 percent more than women, and women are paid only 88.29 percent of what the men are paid.

President Barack Obama and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney. (AP)

The male employees make an average of $10,098 more than the female employees make.

CNSNews.com sent several e-mail and telephone inquiries to the White House for comment on this story but the White House press office did not respond.

The White House has been required since 1995 to submit a report to Congress detailing the title and salary of every employee at its office. As part of President Obama’s “commitment to transparency,”  the 2012 White House Office report is available to the public on the White House’s website, as are reports from the first three years of the president’s first term.

In November 2010, President Obama, who earns $400,000 annually, froze the salaries of every White House staffer who makes over $100,000, meaning the only way for an employee over that benchmark to receive a raise would be through increased responsibilities or a different job. The maximum salary has been $172,200 since 2008, when it was increased by 2.5% from $168,000.

Michael W. Chapman contributed to this report.

mrc merch