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Charity chiefs earn up to €150k - three times average pay packet

CHARITY bosses als get substantial bonuses, new research has found.

The chief executives of 24 leading Irish charities are still earning sums well over three times the average industrial wage -- even after most agreed to pay cuts in the past few years.

Enable Ireland chief executive Fionnuala O'Donovan has admitted to receiving €156,340 -- the highest paid of those who responded to a survey by the Irish Examiner.

Kathleen McLoughlin, chief executive of the Irish Wheelchair Association, was the next best paid at €146,191.

Justin Kilcullen, the chief executive of Trocaire, was on the same salary as Ms McLoughlin, but he took a 9pc pay cut in 2011.

St Vincent de Paul national director Kieran Murphy did not specify the exact amount, but said that he takes between €105,000 and €110,000.

The lowest salary was paid to Jonathan Irwin, head of the Jack and Jill Foundation.

The charity, which provides care and support for children with severe neurological problems, pays its chief €88,200.

In the course of the research, six charities refused to reveal details of remuneration or pay packets to the Irish Examiner.

Unicef Ireland, the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC), Bothar, Simon Communities of Ireland, Special Olympics Ireland and Arthritis Ireland all failed to supply the details stating that they "do not individualise packages for any staff" in their accounts.

Three of the chief executives canvassed by the Irish Examiner said that they had the use of a company car.

By and large, charities have not granted its chief executives a bonus within the past year and expenses are vouched and mainly relate to travel.

Most of the directors have a significant incentive to raise funds for their charity as they receive money for every €1,000 they raise.

Sharon Foley from the Irish Hospice Foundation receives €24.19 for every €1,000 raised, The Irish Cancer Society chief John McCormack receives €8.28 for every €1,000, which is a similar amount earned by Des Kenny, the chief executive of the National Council for the Blind of Ireland.


Others, including Enable Ireland and Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind, take a small percentage of their total income for every €1,000 raised.

The executive director of the Irish Charities and Tax Research, Sheila Nordon, said that it was good practice for charities to include details of overall salaries in their annual reports.

However, Hans Zomer, director of Dochas, a network of Ireland overseas development agencies, said that people should acknowledge that "quality comes at a price".

He said most charities are run as professional businesses and some are the size of significant companies, but Ireland was "way behind" in terms of regulation of the sector.