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How salaries of top-paid Mass. CEOs compare to average workers

Jeffrey Leiden, CEO of Vertex.
Jeffrey Leiden, CEO of Vertex.Essdras M. Suarez/Globe Staff

More on the state’s highest-paid CEOs

The 10 most handsomely paid CEOs in Massachusetts earned a total of $191 million in the last fiscal year, for an average of nearly $20 million a year.

The list, which comes from the Equilar 200 Highest-Paid CEO Rankings, are tallied for each executive by adding together the values of base salaries, cash bonuses, stock awards, perks, and other figures. The list tallies the total compensation of the chief executives of 200 public companies with a market capitalization of at least $1 billion that filed proxies by April 30.

Jeffrey Leiden
Jeffrey Leiden Essdras M Suarez/ Globe Staff

1. Jeffrey M. Leiden, Vertex

$36.6 million

Leiden joined Vertex in 2011. The company, which has posted only one annual profit in its 26 years, has seen its market value nearly double over the past year with the expectation that it will become highly profitable on the strength of its new cystic fibrosis medicine.


2. Stephen P. MacMillan, Hologic

$24.5 million

MacMillan became the chief executive of Hologic in December 2013 after billionaire investor Carl Icahn disclosed a 13 percent stake in the Bedford company.

The company develops, manufactures, and supplies diagnostics products.

Carol Meyrowitz
Carol MeyrowitzSuzanne Kreiter/Globe staff

3. Carol Meyrowitz, TJX

$23.3 million

Meyrowitz, the chief executive of the discount retail chain, started as a buyer for the company in 1983.

TJX Cos. runs a group of discount shopping mainstays including T.J.Maxx, Marshalls, and HomeGoods.

4. George A. Scangos, Biogen

$18.5 million

Scangos became chief executive of Massachusetts’ largest publicly traded company in 2010.

Biogen sells a portfolio of drugs to treat multiple sclerosis and hemophilia.

Paul A. Ricci
Paul A. RicciDan Lamont

5. Paul A. Ricci, Nuance

$17.9 million

Ricci is the chief executive of Nuance, which makes the software that translates words into text for Apple’s voice-recognition assistant, Siri.

Its software is also showing up in many new cars, TV sets, and smartphone apps.

6. Marc N. Casper, Thermo Fisher

$17.4 million

Casper is the chief executive of Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., a maker of life sciences tools and specialty diagnostics equipment.


In 2013 the company bought diagnostics-equipment maker Life Technologies Corp., establishing it as a major force in the emerging personalized medicine market.

Joseph L. Hooley
Joseph L. HooleyWin McNamee/Getty Images

7. Joseph L. Hooley, State Street

$14.1 million

Hooley is chairman and chief executive of State Street Corp., a major financial services firm headquartered in Boston. It is one of the state’s largest employers, but its local workforce has been shrinking.

In 2014, it had about 11,300 employees in Massachusetts — down from 12,000 in early 2013.

8. Robert J. Willett, Cognex

$13.6 million

Willett is the head of Natick-based Cognex, a maker of barcode readers and cameras used by manufacturers.

He joined the company in 2008 and was promoted to CEO in 2011.

James D. Taiclet Jr.
James D. Taiclet Jr.Essdras M Suarez/Globe Staff/Globe staff

9. James D. Taiclet Jr., American Tower

$12.7 million

Taiclet is the chief executive officer of American Tower, a cellphone tower behemoth that has seen its business benefit from the surge in smartphone use that requires data to be transmitted at a high speed around the globe.

10. Ronald L. Sargent, Staples

$12.4 million

Sargent is the chief executive officer of Staples Inc., the Framingham-based office supply giant.

Staples has struggled in recent years and closed 169 stores as it tried to adapt to the digital age. It bought rival Office Depot Inc. for $6.3 billion in February.

Highest paid executives in Massachusetts
Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX) Jeffrey M. Leiden $1,100,000 $2,970,000 $12,857 $4,082,857 $19,883,350 $12,669,261 $36,635,468
Hologic (HOLX) Stephen P. MacMillan $792,308 $1,275,000 $285,463 $2,352,771 $15,340,523 $6,764,995 $24,458,289
TJX Companies (TJX) Carol Meyrowitz $1,575,002 $4,582,886 $44,014 $6,201,902 $16,485,000 $636,000 $23,322,902
Biogen (BIIB) George A. Scangos $1,375,000 $4,047,313 $1,001,483 $6,423,796 $12,120,939 $- $18,544,735
Nuance Communications (NUAN) Paul A. Ricci $800,000 $600,000 $127,521 $1,527,521 $16,412,235 $- $17,939,756
Thermo Fisher Scientific (TMO) Marc N. Casper $1,254,808 $3,353,850 $539,981 $5,148,639 $8,277,048 $4,021,270 $17,446,957
State Street (STT) Joseph L. Hooley $1,000,000 $2,566,750 $309,744 $3,876,494 $10,199,957 $- $14,076,451
Cognex (CGNX) Robert J. Willett $376,115 $712,681 $7,372 $1,096,168 $- $12,524,725 $13,620,893
American Tower (AMT) James D. Taiclet, Jr. $1,100,000 $2,574,000 $30,715 $3,704,715 $4,500,051 $4,500,007 $12,704,773
Staples (SPLS) Ronald L. Sargent $1,249,208 $2,591,478 $325,851 $4,166,537 $8,225,000 $- $12,391,537
SOURCE: Equilar