Sunday 24 June 2018

St John of God group chief executive steps down

The St John of God facility in Stillorgan Dublin
The St John of God facility in Stillorgan Dublin
Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

John Pepper, the Group Chief Executive of the Saint John of God Group (SJOG) has stepped down, it was confirmed this evening.

A HSE audit last year found the way Mr Pepper was paid lacked clarity and transparency.

He joined the charity as personnel manager in 1986 and was appointed to a senior post  in 2012. His salary was €256,665, for which €42,778 was non-pensionable.

In 2013, when the order decided to make compensation payments to senior executives in order to, it said, avoid future liabilities, Mr Pepper received the largest amount of €649,371.

Some €566,724 of this was compensation for the reduction of his salary by €107,000 to retirement, and €82,647 was compensation for the loss of travel allowances.

The audit said it was paid a salary that was “very significantly in excess of the approved rate”. SJOG compensated him for the loss of additional, unapproved pay and future travel allowances to retirement, “contrary to public pay policy”.

A spokesman confirmed that a circular to staff late last year said “Mr Pepper has left our organisation after 30 years of sterling service.

“John, whose career in the health sector spans more than 40 years has served the Order with a strong personal commitment, work ethic and dedication.

“John was appointed to be our first Group Chief Executive in 2012 and in that capacity played a leading role in advancing the Order’s objective of transitioning the provision of services to a lay management structure.

“We thank John for the substantial contribution he has made and we wish him and his family every health, happiness and success in the years ahead”.

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