When CEO Bob Pisano, affectionately known as Whipsaw, took over the reigns at SAG he promised to modernize the joint by replacing the over employment and CUTTING COST!
In his fervor to cut over employment, HEADS HAVE ROLLED! Especially heads that mouthed opinions that disagreed with “It’s My Way Or the Highway” Pisano! Mr. Pisano’s favorite exclamation is “if you don’t like it FIRE ME!” To be fair, Mr. Pisano practices what he preachesif you’re staff, and he don’t like your actions “He FIRES YOU!”
According to Roger Armbrust’s, incisive, investigative Backstage Article “SAG listed 418 employees (down from 490 the previous year)—-including 69 workers listed as “terminated” (also down from last years 105).
As we said in our SW Headline, the main problem with all of this head rolling is that it hasn’t resulted in any salary rollbacks. In fact, according to the LM-2s, the staff payroll & expenses haven’t DECREASED— but have INCREASED from $13,947,364 in 2002 up to $14,094,736 in 2003. So much for big savings to the membership. But on the other hand one might assume that those noggins still attached along with those recently imported will be loyal disciples of the “Word According to Whipsaw!” Especially those members of the Executive Staff!
As spelled out in Armbrust’s article, Twenty-three staff members were listed with six-figure salaries and disbursements: Robert Pisano, national executive director/chief executive officer, $468,323 ($425,426 salary, $42,897 expenses); John T. McGuire, senior advisor, $268,714 ($222,316 salary, $46,398 expenses); F.L. Hickson, national executive director for administration/chief financial officer, $224,934 ($216,216 and $8,718); Sallie Weaver, deputy national executive director, $212,649 ($195,901 and $16,748); SAG general counsel David Alter, $211,372 ($208,885 salary, $2,487 expenses); Deputy National Executive Director Hollis Batchelor, $197,625 ($127,272 and $70,353); Pam W. Fair, national director of policy, $193,830 ($172,392 and $21,438); V.L. Gutin, assistant general counsel, $156,014 ($155,563 and $451); David White, general counsel, $144,520 ($125,124 and $19,396); B.J. Kite, chief information officer, $143,064 ($134,005 and $9,059); B.M. Ellis, national human resources director, $138,005 ($123,225 and $14,780); M.R. Steinberg, special counsel, $137,517 ($128,172 and $9,345); S.G. Rose, national commercials director, $130,449 ($124,162 and $6,287); A.E. Talltree, national entertainment director, $129,332 ($126,504 and $2,828); C.P. Winnor, national controller, $128,825 ($128,493 and $332); T.D. Bergmann, listed as a research director, $123,828 salary, no expenses; H. Berkowitz, director of IT and Telcom, $117,632 (108,862 and $8,770); J.I. Simmons, NY executive director, $117,120 ($109,173 and $7,947); R.M. Lateiner, also listed as a research director, $110,451 ($110,339 and $112); and Ilyanne Kichaven, communications director, $103,817 ($103,692 and $125).
Compare all of these generous salaries with Melissa’s recent e-mail when she tried to cancel a Hollywood Board meeting because she felt it was “inappropriate for the Guild itself to incur any expenses to provide that the meeting take place.
Oh, by the way, the above quoted figures don’t include Mr. Pisano’s recent hefty bump in salary.
Finally, in inspecting the figures which include expense accounts for Mr. Pisano $42,897 dollars and Ms. Gilbert’s $30,294, you gotta love R.M. Lateiner *whose expenses totaled $112 dollars— and Ilyanne Kichaven of $125. Heads off.ah, rather Hats off guys.
Hmmm, me think’s your humble SW Editor & Chief would rather be invited to lunch by Whipsaw or Melissa than R.M. or Ms. Kichaven!
A.L. Miller SW Editor & Chief.