Board of Trustees gives Erickson contract extension, salary increase



Tim Eggert

A 46.9 percent base salary increase and a $50,000 bonus will accompany NMU President Fritz Erickson’s new long-term contract, authorized by the Board of Trustees (BOT) at its July 13 meeting.

The five-year contract positions Erickson’s salary at $385,000.

Trustees cited Erickson’s contribution to two years of increased enrollment, new academic programming, expanding the Educational Access Network and a 34 percent rise in fundraising as reasons for approving the salary increase and incentive

“This contract recognizes and rewards President Erickson for his outstanding leadership and measurable achievements in recent years,” NMU Board Chair Robert Mahaney said in a NMU press release.

Signed in 2014, Erickson’s original contract was set to expire in 2016 and placed his base salary at $220,000.

The BOT extended the contract by two years in 2015, and approved a 2 percent salary increase and a $20,000 bonus. In 2016, both the 2 percent increase and bonus were repeated, setting Erickson’s base salary at $228,888.

A 14.5 percent bump was accompanied by a one-time $50,000 bonus in 2017, increasing Erickson’s base salary to $262,000.

“There are many universities across the country seeking someone with President Erickson’s track record, especially in regard to enrollment success,” Mahaney said. “This package ensures that Northern will continue its strong momentum under President Erickson’s leadership for years to come.”

Mahaney also noted that the $385,000 salary falls below the median of presidents’ salaries at other Michigan public universities.
NMU chief marketing officer Derek Hall released a list of the salaries, which ranks the University of Michigan first with $824,000 and Lake Superior State last with $200,000.

Erickson’s new salary puts him above three other Michigan public universities, with the next highest being $400,000 at Ferris State University.

“I just want to express my appreciation to the board for showing its confidence in me and the entire team,” Erickson said in a prepared statement.