State's top salaries go to college coaches

By The Associated Press

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OLYMPIA — College coaches are the top-paid state employees in Washington, according to a list of 2012 public salaries released by the state Office of Financial Management.

University of Washington football coach Steve Sarkisian earned $2.7 million last year, followed by Washington State University football coach Mike Leach at $2.3 million.

Third on the list is UW basketball coach Lorenzo Romar at $1.35 million, and fourth is WSU coach Ken Bone at $855,000.

By comparison, former Gov. Chris Gregoire — the state’s chief executive in 2012 — earned $162,000 after forfeiting a portion of her pay when other state workers’ pay was cut.

Most state workers saw a 3 percent reduction in pay since July 2011.

Complete list available

The complete list of state salaries is online at

Coaches are paid from athletic department revenue, such as ticket sales and television rights, or gifts, not taxpayer funds.

The first non-coach is fifth on the list — Washington State University President Elson Floyd at $625,000, and sixth is UW president Michael Young at $563,000.

A total of 68 state employees earned more than $300,000. Most of them are in higher education, and many are paid through research grants, not taxes or tuition.

Many of the highest-paid UW employees are in high-demand, high-paying fields such as medicine or computer science, the Office of Financial Management said.

Salaries for the governor and other statewide elected officials and judges are set by the Washington Commission on Salaries for Elected Officials.

(See related story today: "No pay raise for Washington governor this year, but others, including judges, get increases": )

Last modified: May 23. 2013 3:52PM
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