On faculty salaries and feathered nests


The Baptist Blogger has learned that negotiations continue between former SWBTS President Paige Patterson and seminary trustees over the matter of severance. Until late last month, Patterson was slated to keep his more than $300k salary, residence in an all-utilities-paid $2.5 million retirement home, personal and administrative staff, automobiles, an expense account, and honorific titles.

That ended when it was discovered — amid the lowest enrollment in four decades and numerous financial irregularities — that Patterson had requested time alone with a female seminary student so he could “break her down.”

Erstwhile presidential perquisites notwithstanding, we at the Baptist Blogger have not forgotten that while Patterson was raising millions to purchase bogus Dead Sea Scrolls and making plans for his seminary-provided retirement home, he was slashing faculty retirement benefits to nothing.

With that background in mind, The Baptist Blogger is pleased to resume our semi-regular broadcast of Tea Talks. In today’s episode we get to hear from another Southwestern president and what his thoughts were on the importance of faculty salaries and the generosity of wealthy donors to help underwrite them.

(Note: SWBTS Trustees should keep in mind how Patterson slashed faculty retirement benefits 10 years ago before they start writing severance checks backed by Cooperative Program funds. As of last report, there was still nearly $100,000 in the bank of Patmos Evangelistic Association).

3 thoughts on “On faculty salaries and feathered nests

  1. Baptist Blogger: could you remind us why Patterson deserves any kind of severance package? He doubled the enrollment from the time he took over SWBTS? While he was president SWBTS had an incredible output of scholarly publications? He tripled SWBTS endowment?

  2. I wonder if the release of Patterson’s statement today, June 8, in which he states “I am riding off into the setting sun” signals that he and the trustees have concluded their negotiations over severance.

  3. Patterson’s $300k salary is pocket change in some presidential circles. Remember our friend over at the Pietist Schoolman who reported the grotesgue salaries of presidents like Gary Cook over at Dallas Baptist University? https://pietistschoolman.com/2013/12/17/how-well-paid-are-christian-college-presidents/ If I’m not mistaken, that university is also largely supported by SBC churches. And that was 5 years ago. Cook’s salary may be near $1 million now!

    Will any of these college and seminary presidents, or the boards of trustees they largely control by hand selecting persons for membership, learn servant hood instead of self-Kingdom building? And why aren’t the salaries paid to top administrators at SBC seminaries not reported like the salaries of our (supposedly) Christian universities? Maybe there’s a good motion for the SBC next week, or the next series of inquiries by the Baptist Blogger.

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