15 Highest Paid Pennsylvania State Employees | Top List

Pennsylvania is a state with many high-paid employees. From university presidents to investment bankers, many people in the state earn hefty salaries.

The median pay for state employees, including overtime and incentives, was $65,000, a rise of 1% over 2021, according to research by Public sources. These jobs generally require a lot of experience, education, and training.

Some other high-paying jobs in Pennsylvania include portfolio managers, chancellors, CEOS, and board directors. In this article, we will be taking a look at who exactly the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees are. Keep reading more about the best paid Pennsylvania State employees in 2022.

Who are the Highest Paid Pennsylvania State Employees in 2022

The names that made it to this list include; James Grossman, Thomas Bauer, Charles Spiller, etc. These names might be familiar to some, while others might hear them for the first time. If the latter is your case, read on, there is more information about them and others in the article.

By department, the largest number of employees topping $250,000 was the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. 

It is made up of 14 state colleges, including regionally California University of Pennsylvania, Clarion University, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and Slippery Rock University.

Top positions in the university system, such as college presidents, provosts, and vice presidents, accounted for close to 50% of the people earning more than $200,000.

So, if you want to make the most money possible in Pennsylvania, your best bet is to get a job in the educational sector. With an average salary of $65,000 per year, you will be sure to make more than enough to live comfortably in this expensive city.

15 Highest Paid Pennsylvania State Employees

Everyone wants a good salary to live a comfortable life. Here is a look at the top-earning state employees based on the most recent data from the state:

#1. James Grossman

Annual Salary: $474,037

James Grossman is one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees. He was the former chief investment officer at the public school employees’ retirement system

James had his Bachelor’s degree at Elizabethtown College. He worked as a senior manager at KPMG LLP and has been working in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public Schools Employees’ Retirement System.

The Public School Employees Retirement System operates as a pension investment fund.

The company provides pension, retirement, healthcare, and welfare funds. He is one of the best paid Pennsylvania state employee. 

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 #2. Thomas Bauer 

Annual Salary: $390,242

Thomas Bauer is a former deputy chief investment officer at the public school employees’ retirement system. He is the co-founder and chief operating officer at Stux Capital Management LLC.

Thomas was a former portfolio manager with two others for the $50 billion assets US insurance company subsidiary of the dutch firm AGEON NV.

Bauer attended the University of Notre Dame, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He is one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees.

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#3. Charles Spiller      

Annual Salary: $390,242

Charles Spiller is a senior advisor at Macquarie Asset Management(MAM). He is one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees. He also worked at the Pennsylvania Public School Employees Retirement System for 28 years.

Spiller was a managing director for private markets and real estate at PSERS and a portfolio manager at an investment real estate management firm. 

He attended Northeastern University, where he obtained his Bachelor’s Degree.

#4. Michael Driscoll

Annual Salary: $390,235

Michael Driscoll is the president of Indiana University, Pennsylvania, and also one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees. He is currently the longest-serving president in Pennsylvania’s state system of higher education.

Michael served as the executive vice chancellor and provost of the University of Alaska, a position he took after serving in various posts at Portland University.

He earned his phD in 1988, his MSC in 1985, and his BSC in 1983, all in electrical engineering at Michigan State University.

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#5. Daniel Greenstein

Annual Salary: $380,000

Daniel Greenstein is the chancellor of the Pennsylvania state system of higher education. He is the chief executive officer of the state system, which runs Pennsylvania’s 14 public universities.

He led the Postsecondary Success Strategy at the BIll and Melinda Gates Foundation. 

Daniel worked with education leaders across the country to raise educational attainment levels and also went on to become one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees.

He holds Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and a D.Phil from the University of Oxford. 

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#6. Robin Wiesssmann

Annual Salary: $370,999

Robin Wiessmann is the CEO and director at Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, a firm that provides financing for low and moderate-income renters and homeowners.

She was formerly the Secretary of the Department of Banking and Securities, supervising more than 150 PA state-chartered banks, credit unions, and trust companies. The department also reviews more than 5,000 securities offerings yearly.

She graduated from the Rutgers University School of Law with a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Law. He ranks among the top paid Pennsylvania state employees. 

#7. Jeffrey Theobald

Annual Salary: $350,808

Jeffrey Theobald is the current executive director and CEO of the Philadelphia Regional Port Authority. He was the former president and CEO of Ports America Outer Harbour from 2014 to 2016.

He also worked as a consultant for ports, terminals, and transportation, providing consulting services covering ports, container investments, terminal operations, linear network reviews, and logistic services procurement.

Jeffrey served as Director of SVP, Global Operations, Network and Terminals in Singapore. Jeffrey is also one of the top paid Pennsylvania state employees. 

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#8. James Steeley

Annual Salary: $325,891

James Steeley is one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees. Mr. Steeley joined the PSERS in December 2015 as the Chief Financial Officer.

Before joining the Agency, Mr. Steeley was Senior Vice President, Corporate Controller, and Chief Accounting Officer at Susquehanna Bancshares. 

The Assistant Vice President of Finance at the Pennsylvania State Employees Credit Union and a Senior Manager in Financial Services Practice for PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP.

Mr. Steeley is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in Pennsylvania and earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting at Elizabethtown College.

#9. Christopher Florentino

 Annual Salary: $324,243

Christopher Florentino is the current president of West Chester University, Pennsylvania, and one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees.

Dr. Fiorentino has long been a member of staff at West Chester University.  

He began teaching at WCU in 1983 while studying for his doctoral degree in economics. 

He became the vice president for External Operations. In 2016 was chosen to serve as the University’s interim president; in 2017 he was inaugurated as WCU’s 15th president.

President Fiorentino has been active in numerous leadership roles on campus, helping to secure AACSB accreditation for the School of Business; developing off-campus academic centres.

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#10. Robert Devine

Annual Salary: $306,917

Another best paid Pennsylvania state employee is Robert Devine. Robert Devine is the acting chief investment officer of the Pennsylvania Public School Employees’ Retirement System.

Devine, 48, is a life-long Pennsylvanian. He was raised in Centralia, Schuylkill County, and graduated from Villanova University with a bachelor’s degree in political science. Two years later, he bagged a master’s degree in business administration from Bloomsburg University. 

In 2004, Mr Devine bagged a Chartered Financial Analyst designation.

 Devine joined PSERS in 1998 as an investment analyst in the private equity department. In 2000, he moved to PSERS’ Fixed Income unit, where he held several positions until becoming the director of the four-member team that manages $19 billion in assets. 

#11. John Kemp

Annual Salary: $305,949 

John Kemp is the managing director of the Public School Employees’ Retirement System investment office. He was appointed to this rank in April, 2019.

Since Kemp became the director of investments at PSERS, the agency has managed $59.1 billion in investments.

Recently, he incorporated the IBOR to integrate the operations of the PSERS, making the Pennsylvania’s pension fund’s underlying holdings transparent across the middle and back office. He is one of the best paid Pennsylvania State employees.

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#12. Seth Kelly

Annual Salary: $303,011

Seth is another top paid Pennsylvania state employee. Seth Kelly is currently the chief investment officer at the State Employees’ Retirement System. While at SERS, she joined the list of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees.

Kelly was appointed as the chief investment officer of the SERS by the Missouri State Employees’ Retirement System (MOSERS).

He worked for nearly 16 years at MOSERS, where he was CIO for nearly four years before retiring in December 2019.

While at MOSERS, Kelly focused on investment strategies that emphasized diversification, fee reduction, strategic asset allocation, and risk management. 

Also, he helped the pension fund cut down its annual management fee costs by $24 million over three years, mainly by cutting hedge fund fees in half. 

#13. Geraldine Jones

Annual Salary: $302,150

Geraldine Jones is the president of the California University of Pennsylvania. She is one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees. 

She started her career as a second-grade teacher in the Albert Gallatin School District, in Pennsylvania. Dr. Geraldine returned to California, serving as program director for the Upward Bound college access program and as chair of the Department of Academic Development Services for years. 

In 2008, she was named provost and vice president for academic affairs, a position she held until being appointed as acting university president in May 2012. Important initiatives have been realized under President Jones’ leadership which has helped push the university forward.

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#14. Darren Foreman

Annual Salary: $298,576

Darren Foreman is the current director of private equity at the Public School Employees’ Retirement System. He Manages a successful in-house private equity co-investment program (closed 65 deals) with a 29% TWR.

He works with the Advisory Board of various global private equity funds. He supervises a team of over 5 investment professionals.

Darren performed due diligence on U.S, European, and Asian private equity funds. Foreman has served on the advisory board of several PE funds. He brokered limited partnership agreements and side letters.

He attended the Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, where he obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. He is one of the highest paid Pennsylvania state employees.

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#15. Kenneth Hawkinson.

Annual Salary: $292,130

On our final list of the best paid Pennsylvania state employees is Kenneth Hawkinson. Kenneth Hawkinson is the president of the University of Kutztown, Pennsylvania. He began his tenure as the 12th president of Kutztown University on July 1, 2015.

He has made 53 initiatives for the institution focusing on areas such as academic excellence, enrollment management, student success, and increasing educational opportunity and access.  

 Achievements since his appointment include the completion of a strategic plan for the university, a new marketing plan for the school, an increase in academic excellence, and better student academic profile

He established many advisory committees to enhance his commitment to shared governance and a reasonable increase in fundraising. 

Before assuming the position of provost, Hawkinson worked in Western Illinois for four years as associate provost and vice president for budget, mobilization, and personnel. He was associate dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication and head of the Department of Communication.

Hawkinson bagged his bachelor’s degree in history from Western Illinois University. He also has a Master of Arts in speech communication from the institution and a doctorate in speech communication and performance studies from Southern Illinois University.

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We hope this list of the highest paid Pennsylvania employees has given you a better understanding of how much money some people in the city earn. 

However, it is important to remember that these salaries are not necessarily representative of all workers in Pennsylvania. Also, it is evident that to earn very high in Pennsylvania, you have to work in the educational sector.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the highest Paying job in Pennsylvania?

The highest Paying jobs in Pennsylvania are:

University chancellor
Financial manager
Chief investment manager
Portfolio and asset manager

How long will it take me to land a job in Pennsylvania after graduation?

The duration will take you to land a job after graduation is not certain. Different factors contribute to how soon you get a job. The earlier you get the right information and tools (CV, cover letter) needed to get a job, the faster you land the job.

What will be my salary in my first job?

How much you will earn in your first job depends on factors such as your skills, experience, and negotiation skills.

Can I get a job with no prior work experience?

Employers often lookout for job candidates with work experience because they can get the work done easily and better. You can still get a job even if you don’t have any prior work experience.
When some employees want to hire entry-level job candidates, they look beyond their work experience.

What are the easiest jobs to get in Pennsylvania?

The easiest jobs to get in Pennsylvania are:

Personal trainer
Dog walker
Massage therapist



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