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Culture Monthly Lists

Highly Compensated Ministry Executives – 2022

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Below is a list of 100 highly paid Christian ministry executives. The information was derived from the Form 990 prepared by the ministry itself.

We are not calling this list the “Highest Paid Christian Ministry Executives” because we know that many pastors and other church leaders who might make more are not on this list, because churches are not required to make their Form 990s available to the public.

Also, MinistryWatch has identified a growing trend among Christian ministries to identify as churches and thereby withhold their Form 990s. Among the MinistryWatch 1000 ministries in the country who have made this election include: CRU/Campus Crusade for Christ, The Navigators, Gideons International, Willow Creek Association, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, Joyce Meyer Ministries, Denison Forum, and Ethnos360/New Tribes Mission.

In addition, many megachurches and their related radio and television ministries also withhold their Form 990s. These organizations and individuals include:  Joel Osteen, David Jeremiah, Benny Hinn, Creflo Dollar, and Kenneth Copeland.

MinistryWatch has gone on record repeatedly, and we do so again here, with our view that withholding Form 990s is an unwise practice.  You can read a more complete explanation of our position here.

A word about timing: This information comes from the most recent Form 990 available on Guidestar.org. For most ministries, they come from the year 2020.  For some, 2019 was the most recent year.  If we did not have current salary data (2020 or 2019), we left those executives off the list.

In the case of Franklin Graham, only his Samaritan’s Purse compensation is listed. He also serves as president of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and (for the reason cited above) we were not able to determine what compensation he receives from BGEA.

In the case of the Inspiration Networks:  Some executives receive their salaries from a for-profit subsidiary.  The for-profit subsidiary, INSP LLC, is wholly owned by the non-profit organization The Inspirational Networks, Inc.

Digging Into The Numbers

This list reveals a number of interesting facts.  Here are a few:

  • The total compensation for all the executives on this list is $81.9-million.  That’s a 31 percent increase over the year before.
  • Inspiration Ministries has 8 executives on this list, more than any other ministry.  Baylor University (7) and Pepperdine University (6) are next.
  • Fourteen other ministries with 2 or more executives on the list.  They are:  Grand Canyon University (4), Liberty University (4), International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (3), Alliance Defending Freedom (2), Buckner Children & Family Services (2), Campbell University (2), Dallas Baptist University (2), Educational Media Foundation — K-Love and Air1 (2), Glory of Zion (2), Hillsdale College (2), Trinity Broadcasting Network (2), Wheaton College (2), YMCA of the USA (2)
Person nameTitleOrganization namePeriod endingTotal compensation
1David CerulloDirector/President & CEOInspiration Ministries12/31/2019 $7,319,371
2Nido QuibeinPresidentHigh Point University5/31/2020 $3,443,945
3Yechiel EcksteinPresident, CEO & FounderInternational Fellowship of Christians and Jews12/31/2019 $2,948,441
4Dale D ArdizzoneGeneral Counsel & Corp SecInspiration Ministries12/31/2019 $2,415,273
5Jerry FalwellChancellor/PresidentLiberty University6/30/2020 $2,202,231
6JC WattsFormer Director/CEOFeed The Children6/30/2020 $1,870,000
7Linda LivingstonePresidentBaylor University5/31/2020 $1,506,723
8Ronald EllisPresidentCalifornia Baptist University6/30/2020 $1,351,610
9Charles D. PiercePresidentGlory of Zion International Ministries3/31/2020 $1,239,583
10Michael NovakCEO (Retired)Educational Media Foundation (K-LOVE & Air 1 Radio)12/31/2019 $1,232,088
11John AllmanHead of SchoolTrinity Episcopal Schools Corporation6/30/2020 $1,128,031
12Larry ArnnPresidentHillsdale College6/30/2020 $1,099,372
13Andrew BentonPresident & CEOPepperdine University7/31/2019 $1,081,658
14Robert I BraceCFO & TreasurerInspiration Ministries12/31/2019 $942,192
15Jon R WallaceFormer President & TrusteeAzusa Pacific University6/30/2020 $936,726
16William FlemingPresidentPalm Beach Atlantic University6/30/2020 $897,058
17Keith EvansPresidentWestminster Schools7/31/2020 $891,518
18Hal LindseyChairmanHal Lindsey Website Ministries12/31/2019 $880,000
19Matthew CrouchPresident/DirectorTrinity Broadcasting Network12/31/2019 $866,275
20Alan SearsFounderAlliance Defending Freedom6/30/2020 $830,412
21Timothy R CottrellHead of School, Ex Officio'Iolani School6/30/2020 $813,743
22Roy Brian WebbVP & Chief Investment OfficerBaylor University5/31/2020 $798,034
23Kevin WashingtonPresident and CEOYMCA of the USA12/31/2020 $793,640
24Rick MarrsProvostPepperdine University7/31/2019 $792,291
25Benjamin CerulloEVP Ministry OutreachInspiration Ministries12/31/2019 $762,132
26Temba MaqubelaHeadmasterGroton School6/30/2020 $752,402
27John RoosEVP Corporate CommunicationsInspiration Ministries12/31/2019 $748,476
28Colby MayDirectorTrinity Broadcasting Network12/31/2019 $747,271
29Tony LintelmanFormer VPBuckner Children and Family Services12/31/2019 $739,881
30Brian MuellerPresidentGrand Canyon University6/30/2020 $736,215
31Barry CoreyPresidentBiola University6/30/2020 $724,923
32Franklin GrahamPresidentSamaritan's Purse12/31/2019 $722,403
33David DiniHeadmasterSt. Mark's School of Texas6/30/2020 $704,950
34Charles PippinSVP InvestmentsPepperdine University7/31/2019 $699,623
35Barbara CerulloDir/EVPInspiration Ministries12/31/2019 $696,620
36Randy Lowry IIIPresidentLipscomb University5/31/2020 $690,401
37Evans P WhitakerPresidentAnderson University5/31/2020 $687,459
38David RobertsonCOO Ministry OutreachInspiration Ministries12/31/2019 $676,660
39Mark KramerEVPInspiration Ministries12/31/2019 $667,130
40Randal O'RearPresidentUniversity of Mary Hardin-Baylor5/31/2020 $663,931
41Adam WrightPresidentDallas Baptist University5/31/2020 $658,333
42Paul McEntireEVP & COOYMCA of the USA12/31/2020 $648,314
43Yael Eckstein-FarkasPresident & CEOInternational Fellowship of Christians and Jews12/31/2019 $625,980
44John KauffmanFaculty Campbell University5/31/2020 $620,302
45Brian RobertsChief Administrative OfficerGrand Canyon University6/30/2020 $618,593
46Richardson SchellHeadmasterKent School Corporation6/30/2020 $608,832
47Daniel MartinPresidentSeattle Pacific University6/30/2020 $608,156
48Gordon RobertsonCEOChristian Broadcasting Network3/31/2020 $607,225
49Kelly ShackelfordPresident/CEOFirst Liberty Institute6/30/2020 $600,782
50Henry RaddaProvostGrand Canyon University6/30/2020 $589,708
51David MoreheadVP & Chief Investment OfficerBaylor University5/31/2020 $583,910
52Brett DaltonChief Business OfficerBaylor University5/31/2020 $583,684
53Ronald KennedyEVP of Enrollment & MarketingLiberty University6/30/2020 $578,805
54Gary CookChancellorDallas Baptist University5/31/2020 $575,307
55Gary HansonEVP and COOPepperdine University7/31/2019 $575,045
56Turner GillFormer Highly CompensatedLiberty University6/30/2020 $573,682
57Andy DoyleChairmanCamp Allen Camp and Conference Center12/31/2019 $571,022
58Joan DannenbergChief Financial OfficerTrinity Episcopal Schools Corporation6/30/2020 $569,699
59Roger ParrottPresidentBelhaven University6/30/2020 $564,302
60Thomas LockeHead of SchoolThe Episcopal Academy6/30/2020 $564,298
61Robert SloanPresidentHouston Baptist University5/31/2020 $556,683
62William M WilsonPresidentOral Roberts University4/30/2020 $554,436
63Philip G RykenPresident/TrusteeWheaton College6/30/2020 $551,292
64Andrea KellyHead of SchoolFriends Academy6/30/2020 $547,356
65Thomas MonaghanSenior CounselAmerican Center for Law and Justice3/31/2020 $545,778
66Charles StanleyPresident & ChairmanIn Touch Ministries9/30/2019 $543,022
67Theron Andrew WestmorelandPresidentSamford University6/30/2020 $542,242
68Kenneth McKenzieCEO (Partial Year)Museum of the Bible6/30/2020 $539,791
69Atul TandonCEOOpportunity International12/31/2019 $539,732
70Dave RosselliVice PresidentBaylor University5/31/2020 $532,531
71Philip SchubertPresidentAbilene Christian University5/31/2020 $531,176
72Natalia R HernandezHead of SchoolBreck School6/30/2020 $529,939
73John CerviniVice PresidentHillsdale College6/30/2020 $526,002
74Edgar SandovalPresidentWorld Vision, Inc., U.S.9/30/2020 $524,375
75Carlos CampoPresidentAshland University5/31/2020 $522,747
76Cris DoornbosCEODavid C. Cook5/31/2020 $520,571
77Kent InglePresidentSoutheastern University5/31/2020 $519,817
78George Mamo THRU 820COOInternational Fellowship of Christians and Jews12/31/2019 $515,762
79Albert ReyesPresident/CEOBuckner Children and Family Services12/31/2019 $509,054
80Chris HolmesGeneral CounselBaylor University5/31/2020 $502,761
81Stanton JonesFormer Provost; Former ProfessorWheaton College6/30/2020 $501,897
82Michael ThirtlePresident/CEOBethesda Lutheran Communities8/31/2019 $501,856
83Alan MasonPresidentEducational Media Foundation (dba K-LOVE and Air 1 Radio)12/31/2019 $499,607
84Newton CrenshawPresident/CEOYoung Life9/30/2020 $499,544
85Paul McNultyPresidentGrove City College6/30/2020 $498,208
86Joseph PiercePastor Youth ApostleGlory of Zion International Ministries3/31/2020 $493,377
87Pierre FerrariCEOHeifer Project International6/30/2020 $490,330
88Jerry DavisPresidentCollege of the Ozarks5/31/2020 $487,129
89Christine LindersonSVP of Financial AidGrand Canyon University6/30/2020 $483,304
90Deryk Janse Van RensburgDeanPepperdine University7/31/2019 $482,630
91Michael FarrisPresident/CEOAlliance Defending Freedom (pka Alliance Defense Fund, Inc.)6/30/2020 $482,208
92Robin G MahfoodPresident/CEO (partial year)Food For The Poor12/31/2019 $480,769
93Santiago H MelladoPresident/CEOCompassion International, Inc.6/30/2019 $476,818
94Peter BellDeanLiberty University6/30/2020 $474,539
95Michael LindsayPresidentGordon College6/30/2020 $473,832
96Gary CariniVice ProvostBaylor University5/31/2020 $473,738
97Samuel HinkleSVP AdvancementPepperdine University7/31/2019 $473,049
98J. Bradley CreedPresidentCampbell University5/31/2020 $472,877
99Barry GillerHead of SchoolCharlotte Christian School6/30/2020 $469,799
100Roy PetersonPresident/CEOAmerican Bible Society6/30/2020 $457,471
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Warren Cole Smith

Warren previously served as Vice President of WORLD News Group, publisher of WORLD Magazine, and Vice President of The Colson Center for Christian Worldview. He has more than 30 years of experience as a writer, editor, marketing professional, and entrepreneur. Before launching a career in Christian journalism 25 years ago, Smith spent more than seven years as the Marketing Director at PricewaterhouseCoopers.