Wayne Pacelle takes over HSUS


The Washington Post has a great article on Wayne Pacelle, the new head of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). The big news: he’s a vegan and he’s serious about fighting hunting and farm animal cruelty. The article is very flattering and his critics come off like bitter and angry people who love claiming about how they have a “right” to raise chickens for cockfights or to have “canned hunts.”

I have a feeling there will be a lot of vitriol towards Pacelle as well as a lot of twisted opinions and outright lies (some are mentioned and dealt with in the article). Me, I’m anxious to see what a dedicated vegan can do in a post like his. Call me crazy, but when an organization like the HSUS was serving meat at their events, I don’t quite understand how they could claim to be an advocate for humane treatment of animals. The coming years will be interesting, that’s for sure.

14 Responses to “Wayne Pacelle takes over HSUS”

  1. Marilyn Baran

    I am thrilled that Wayne is HSUS president. It is a real plus for the organization.

  2. Ms Gerry P Knam

    I read were in 2003, Paul G. Irwin, president of HSUS’s Compensation was: $315,898.
    And in 1998, Paul G. Irwin, President received $237,540.00 in salary plus $21,283.00 in benefits that included medical and life insurance ($5,849.00) and deferred compensation ($15,434.00).

    Irwin also received a partial payment of $311,502.00 his “Board approved retirement plan” said to total $1 million cash.

    Note: Craig W. Irwin, Paul G. Irwinís son, received $46,453.00 as an HSUS employee.

    Do you know what Wayne Pacelle makes?

  3. Stephanie

    In 2003, Waynce Pacelle took in $119,750. That’s when he was Senior VP — hopefully his salary didn’t increase to some nasty number.

    Ingrid Newkirk takes in something like $30,000 annually — we need to direct as many funds as possible to the cause, and not be like the CEO of the American Cancer Society, who makes half a million/year.

  4. Danielle

    I think I remember a snarky comment toward the beginning of the article about Pacelle brainwashing kids into being vegan. I wrote a snarly letter back suggesting the that the meat and dairy industries, the junk food industries, big soda, blah, blah, blah ALREADY brainwash our kids.

  5. Danielle

    Okay, those are two words that should never, ever appear together.

  6. Katie

    I agree that the salaries should not be excessive but I do feel in today’s society people are, and need to be, concerned about what they make in order to be assured that they are financial secure and can support thier families etc. In order to attract and retain talented, educated, smart, ambitious individuals in organizations like HSUS, I think competitive salaries need to be awarded at all levels of the organization.

  7. Neal

    According to the website Charity Navigator, Wayne Pacelle receives a salery of $164,979. This seems more than reasonable for the CEO of a company with assets of over 100 million dollars. The HSUS is highly rated on the site for efficiency and a low expense to revenue ratio. The one fact that seemed glaring to me is the fact that Paul G. Irwin (the former president) continues to recieve $612,226 annually. I don’t know the details of his retirement plan, (he served as president for 28 years) but his salary alone represents almost 1% of total expenses.

  8. Bill Smith

    Neal – it seems completely unreasonable to me for Pacelle to receive a salary of 165,000 per year. You can’t compare an organization like HSUS to for-profit companies. If GE or whoever wants to pay their big guys unnecessarily large amounts of money, that’s their business, but HSUS is a non-profit organization that receives its funds from donations.

    My wife and I do very hard physical labor and make very little money. We spend many, many hours and countless dollars helping animals in need, but we don’t get any material compensation; in fact, as indicated, it costs us money. We go to work and tend to animals after work.

    Why can’t Pacelle show a similar sacrifical attitude? Can’t he simplify his lifestyle? Can’t he live on $60,000 or $45,000 per year (my wife and I live on less than that)?

    And the $612,000 to Irwin is just appalling. I will never give another cent to HSUS as long as Irwin is receiving that. And that’s a shame because my wife and I are horrified by the plight of animals in this cruel, uncaring world.

  9. Lisa

    Listen folks Wayne Pacelle’s salary is hardly excessive, in fact it hardly measures up with the for-profit figures that hover in the millions BEFORE the added perks, bonuses and stocks. The bottom line is that if you want someone with the skills to keep your corporation successful and growing then you have to be willing to pay for it. HSUS isn’t a small operation, you have to be willing to attract a person with the right abilities to maintain the business and keep it growing, which he seems to be doing so far. That said, I have no idea why Irwin would be pulling in that kiind of money- he must have had a very good attorney negotiating the details of his contract. I agree that the terms of his retirement income, if it is $600K+, is indeed distrubing. Honestly there are thousands of very needy rescue organizations that pay their employees very little, and if at any time you’re not comfortable with what HSUS is doing by their executive staff I would encourage you to give your donations to the smaller, lesser known organiztaions (I may be doing just that in light of this info about Irwin’s income but not about Pacelle’s)

  10. Debbie Kater

    I know from a friend who works with Wayne at the HSUS that he had his salary cut in half when he accepted the position of CEO and President. He thought that the amount of money that former CEO Paul Irwin made was unnecessary.

  11. Mike Fagan

    I am willing to bet alot of money that a communist like Wayne Pacelle is going to end up in the same boat as , Elliot Spitzer , Kilpapatrick, Leah Fastow and all the rest of these self rightous people. They seem too believe thatr any method in enforcing there will on the American people is fair game . Pacelle spreads lies uses intimadation , blackmail and any other sort of low and underhanded trick to push forward his single minded extremist views. Ill just sit back and wait dont worry folks once all of these people like are pulled out in the light of day its not a pretty picture!

  12. charleen pasiglia

    First off, if you’re going to post, make sure you have proper grammar and spelling in place. Secondly, complaining of what you make in comparison to Pacelle doesn’t quite fly if your qualifications aren’t as measurable as his. If you and your wife are graduates of Yale and are earning less than what you spent on tuiton, you should re-evaluate your current positions. I agree with those who state that if you want a qualified, educated person who will argue for what you believe in, then you have to be willing to accept that part of what you give goes to paying his or her bills. There’s a reason why a couple earning less that $45k a year isn’t on capital hill fighting for a cause… I’m just saying…. And Mr. Fagan, your state representative would laugh at your attempt at legistlation with grammar and spelling like yours… Again there’s a reason why someone like Wayne Pacelle is in the position he is in. Let’s support the cause and not critique the leader.

  13. KAREN

    In looking at the salry the new president of HSUS will be making plus the perks, I wonder if we know the true picture. What are the total perks? Expenses for travel? Cars? Limos? Food expenses during travel? Who oversees the travel and how pertinent to the mission of HSUS will it be?

    While I support overall the causes HSUS fights, I do wonder at the behind the scenes issues that always seem to crop up with non-profits and the lack of oversight of many of them.

    Plus, if HSUS is a non-profit, why do they have so much money in the bank? By definition, a non profit does not make a profit so that should mean they break even every year, right? Having millions in the bank does not to me seem to be non-profit. Maybe they could give $500 K to Best Friends Society who took many of the Vick Dogs for rehab and release. I personally do not donate to HSUS, I donate locally to groups that help animals.


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