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[ga] Re: ICANN posts *redacted* Form 990 for year ending June 30, 2008

  • To: GNSO GA Mailing List <ga@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: [ga] Re: ICANN posts *redacted* Form 990 for year ending June 30, 2008
  • From: George Kirikos <gkirikos@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 17 Jun 2009 10:18:47 -0700 (PDT)

Hi again,

Just as an update, ICANN sent me a copy of the unredacted forms, which I 
scanned to PDF and can be viewed at:


Page 43 of the new PDF corresponds to the salaries that had previously been 
redacted. We can now see that for the year ending June 30, 2008, their 
compensation was:

1) Amy Stathos (Senior Counsel), $223,307 compensation with $49,846 
contributions to employee benefit plans
2) Theresa Swinehart (VP), $251,497 compensation with $62,916 contributions to 
employee benefit plans
3) David Conrad (VP), $197,779 compensation with $53,028 contributions to 
employee benefit plans
4) Denise Michel (VP), $235,722 compensation with $52,500 contributions to 
employee benefit plans, and $115,649 expense account (in the note, it says that 
the expense account was meant to tax neutralize her payments during her 
overseas assignment in the prior fiscal year)
5) Daniel Halloran (Deputy Gen. Counsel), $186,003 compensation with $60,536 
contributions to employee benefit plans

Comparing with the prior year:


many had a very substantial increase. This as the economy entered a recession, 
and when most companies were cutting back, when even law firms were suffering:


Of course when an organization is only accountable to itself, and has the 
ability to tax gTLD domain name registrants, it's easy to be Santa Claus, 
giving out raises and paying higher salaries than what the non-profit 
comparables would justify.

A careful comparison between ICANN and NTIA/DOC/DOJ/universities/hospitals and 
other non-profit organizations would be appropriate to measure the amount being 
wasted by ICANN.

>From page 12 of the PDF, the total number of employees paid over $50,000 was 
>59 in the year ending June 30, 2008 (54 not the five highest + the 5 highest = 
>59). This compares to 37 in the prior year. Similarly, 14 independent 
>contractors (9+5) received over $50,000 for "professional services", and 38 
>independent contractors (33+5) received over $50,000 for "other services."  
>That's a large constituency of consultants that is self-interested in seeing 
>ICANN engage in mission-creep and boondoggle projects (new gTLDs, etc.).

Hopefully the new CEO of ICANN will do the right thing and start cutting 
salaries, firing employees that don't shape up, and cutting the other wasteful 
expenses that consumers and businesses ultimately end up paying for through 
higher costs and prices.


George Kirikos

--- On Mon, 6/15/09, gkirikos@xxxxxxxxx <gkirikos@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> From: gkirikos@xxxxxxxxx <gkirikos@xxxxxxxxx>
> Subject: ICANN posts *redacted* Form 990 for year ending June 30, 2008
> To: "GNSO GA Mailing List" <ga@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> Cc: kevin.wilson@xxxxxxxxx
> Date: Monday, June 15, 2009, 5:04 PM
> Hi folks,
> ICANN has posted their latest IRS Form 990 for the year
> ending June 30, 2008, see:
> http://www.icann.org/en/financials/tax/us/fy-2008-form-990.pdf
> however it is highly redacted (page 10 shows a date of May
> 14, 2009, so it must have been posted recently). In
> particular, note page 43 of the PDF does not give the
> individual compensation, instead saying:
> "Compensation, employee benefit and expense account
> information redacted for, confidentiality."
> However, according to Guidestar:
> http://www.guidestar.org/DisplayArticle.do?articleId=865#1
> "Organizations that do not wish to provide hard copies of
> these document(s) do have another option: they can post a
> copy on their Web site. With the exception of masking
> donor's names and addresses on Forms 990, 990-EZ, and
> 990-PF, the documents must not be altered in any way."
> Obviously redacting the employee compensation information
> is going beyond what Guidestar says is allowed.
> The law is that anyone can ask for a copy of the unredacted
> versions:
> http://www.irs.gov/charities/article/0,,id=96430,00.html
> http://www.irs.gov/charities/article/0,,id=139231,00.html
> "In general, exempt organizations must make available for
> public inspection certain annual returns and applications
> for exemption, and must provide copies of such returns and
> applications to individuals who request them.  Copies
> usually must be provided immediately in the case of
> in-person requests, and within 30 days in the case of
> written requests.  The tax-exempt organization may
> charge a reasonable copying fee plus actual postage, if
> any."
> Please consider this my formal written request for the full
> unredacted form with ALL schedules unredacted. It's going to
> show up eventually anyway at Guidestar, so I don't
> understand why ICANN is playing these games, when they are
> supposed to be "transparent" and "accountable."
> If anyone passes by the ICANN offices in-person, please do
> make the request, as they must provide an unredacted copy
> immediately.
> Some compensation numbers did get through unredacted (pages
> 35 through 39), namely:
> 1) Douglas Brent (COO) $390,939 ($99,412 contribution to
> employee benefit plans)
> 2) John Jeffrey (General Counsel) $314,500 ($63,982
> contribution to employee benefit plans)
> 3) Paul Levins (VP), $263,946 ($84,110 contribution to
> employee benefit plans, and $48,359 expense account and
> other allowances)
> 4) Kurt Pritz (SVP), $318,846 ($79,627 contribution to
> employee benefit plans)
> 5) Paul Twomey (CEO), $691,610 ($255,649 contribution to
> employee benefit plans)
> 6) Kevin Wilson (CFO), $153,310 ($50,198 contribution to
> employee benefit plans)
> (some of the above might not be for a full 12 months)
> Page 43 reveals Amy Stathos, Theresa Swinehart, David
> Conrad, Denise Michel and Daniel Halloran combined for a
> total of $1,094,308, with $278,826 as contributions to
> employee benefit plans and $115,649 for expense accounts.
> Page 44 reveals Jones Day pulled in $1.6 million for legal
> services, the Ombudsman's corporation pulled in $437K,
> Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti pulled in $240K, Gibson Dunn
> Crutcher got $140K and Clayton Utz got $128K. 
> Page 45 reveals The Wentworth Company got $589K, Interisle
> got $395K, Project Management Solutions got $338K, Iron
> Mountain got $327K, and Crown IT got $309K.
> Page 11 reveals that 54 other employees were paid over
> $50,000.
> For comparison with other years, see our previous post last
> year at:
> http://gnso.icann.org/mailing-lists/archives/ga-200709/msg02021.html
> In my opinion, these salaries (and contracting expenses
> too!) are far too high for a non-profit entity. Compensation
> should reflect non-profit comparables, as I've argued before
> at:
> http://www.circleid.com/posts/20090105_icann_for_profit_companies_comparables/
> Relevant comparables could be found for people working
> similar jobs at the USPTO, NTIA, DOC, DOJ, universities,
> hospitals and other organizations of that nature, with their
> inherent job security compared to the for-profit sector of
> the economy.
> Sincerely,
> George Kirikos
> http://www.leap.com/

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