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Harvard Management Company CEO Receives 6.9% Pay Cut Over Poor Investment Returns

Harvard Management Company Narv Narvekar faced a 6.9 percent pay cut over the endowment's poor performance in fiscal year 2022.
Harvard Management Company Narv Narvekar faced a 6.9 percent pay cut over the endowment's poor performance in fiscal year 2022. By Briana Howard Pagán
By Thomas J. Mete, Crimson Staff Writer

The Harvard Management Company, the entity that stewards Harvard’s $50.7 billion endowment, cut the pay of Chief Executive Officer N.P. “Narv” Narvekar by 6.9 percent in 2022 after the endowment had its third-worst annual investment results in the last 20 years.

Narvekar, who received $6.19 million in total compensation, saw his total pay drop to its lowest levels since he joined the HMC in 2016. Narvekar received approximately $1 million in base salary and $5.2 million in bonuses.

Harvard disclosed the 2022 salaries of its highest paid administrators and faculty members in the University’s annual Form 990 tax filings on Friday. The Internal Revenue Service requires all tax-exempt organizations — including higher education institutions — to report salaries for each fiscal year.

The HMC reported compensation figures for its top executives, encompassing salaries, incentive-based compensation, and deferred payments from previous years. Harvard and HMC separately file taxes to the IRS.

Former University Treasurer Paul Finnegan ’75 — who chairs the HMC board of directors that approves salaries and bonuses for HMC executives — rushed to dispel any notion that the University’s leadership had lost confidence in Narvekar.

Finnegan, who will step down from the Harvard Corporation at the end of June, praised Narvekar and his team for producing annualized endowment returns of 9.2 percent and reshaping the University’s investing approach.

“Over the course of six fiscal years, Narv and his team have made tremendous progress repositioning the endowment and HMC for long-term success,” Finnegan wrote in a Friday press release.

“Their hard work has allowed the University to sustain this critical source of funding for financial aid, groundbreaking research, and world class teaching,” he added.

In 2022, Narvekar and Chief Investment Officer Richard W. Slocum elected to defer $1.24 million in compensation to this fiscal year. The move led to an increase in their total reported compensation on W-2 forms for the 2023 fiscal year, despite changes in salary and bonuses.

The Form 990 tax filings also disclosed the salary of the University’s top leadership, including the pay of former Harvard President Lawrence S. Bacow during his final year in the job.

Bacow earned roughly $1.3 million during the 2023 fiscal year, in line with his 2022 earnings.

The compensation figures reported by the University depict earnings for the 2023 fiscal year spanning from July 1, 2022 to June 30, 2023. Bacow, who stepped down in June, was the only president whose earnings were reported in Friday’s filings.

During the 2023 fiscal year, then-University Provost Alan M. Garber ’76 received yet another pay hike, earning over $175,000 more than 2022. He earned a salary of $884,365 and an additional $238,402 in compensation for his residence provided by the University.

Garber’s earnings do not reflect his current salary as interim president and its compensation package, after he succeeded former Harvard President Claudine Gay in an interim capacity.

Gay, who served as dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences throughout the entirety of the most recent fiscal year, earned $679,638 — a slight increase from the year prior.

Gay’s current salary remains unclear. She served as president for just 185 days before resigning amid allegations of plagiarism and fierce backlash over her handling of campus antisemitism. She has since returned to her role as a Government and African and African American Studies professor.

The compensation figures do not include University provided housing offered to top administrators or other non-taxable benefits including medical insurance and retirement contributions made by the University.

David J. Malan ’99, a computer science professor of practice, remained Harvard’s highest paid active faculty member for a third straight year earning over $1.3 million. Malan teaches the flagship Harvard course Computer Science 50: “Introduction to Computer Science I,” which has evolved into one of the College’s largest classes and draws massive online enrollment at the Harvard Extension School.

Harvard Business School professors Rohit Deshpande and Walter C. Kester were among the top earning faculty members, each receiving north of $2 million. The sudden increase in their compensation was due to the voluntary retirement plan for tenure faculty where they can opt to retire in exchange for a lump-sum payment.

—Staff writer Thomas J. Mete can be reached at thomas.mete@thecrimson.com. Follow him on Twitter @thomasjmete.

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