Boeing’s CEO Will Walk Away With Tens Of Millions Despite Failing To Solve Key Safety Issues

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Will Kessler Contributor
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Boeing’s CEO, Dave Calhoun, has already been paid tens of millions by the company and could be paid even more upon his exit despite failing to solve a series of safety issues that have plagued the jet manufacturer.

In Calhoun’s first three years, starting in 2020, the CEO was given over $64.6 million in compensation, including significant stock awards and option awards that could generate even more gains depending on stock fluctuations, according to Boeing’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Recent safety concerns have led Calhoun to step down, with recent issues stemming from an incident on Alaska Airlines in early January where a door plug flew off of a Boeing 737 Max 9 mid-flight, resulting in numerous injuries and an emergency landing. (RELATED: Biden Regulator Considering Limiting United Airlines Growth Amid Safety Concerns: REPORT)

Calhoun’s pay for 2023 will not be publicly available until the company releases its 2024 proxy statement, and it has not been announced whether he will receive a severance package with his exit. “Further information about Dave Calhoun’s total compensation will be provided in company filings in the coming weeks,” Boeing told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

In 2022 alone, Calhoun was given $1.4 million in base salary, $8.5 million in stock awards, another $8.5 million in option awards, over $3.4 million in non-equity incentive plan compensation and $661,596 in other compensation, according to SEC filings.

Under Calhoun’s compensation package, if the company’s stock can rise by around 37%, he can exercise the numerous stock options that he has been granted, according to Fortune. Calhoun could get up to $45.5 million if Stephanie Pope, Boeing’s next CEO, is able to bring the stock price to the strike point.

Boeing’s issues with safety predate Calhoun, with the last CEO, Dennis Muilenburg, being fired after mishandling the response to a pair of Boeing plane crashes in 2018 and 2019 that killed 346 people under his tenure, according to CNN. Despite the crashes occurring under his tenure, Muilenburg’s total compensation was around $80 million in stocks and assets, but he was denied a severance package.

A report released in February by the Federal Aviation Administration, which was mandated by Congress following the two crashes, claimed that Boeing’s current operation procedures could inhibit proper safety compliance through a disconnect in safety culture between senior management and lower members.

Boeing also ousted Ed Clark, head of the jet manufacturer’s 737 Max passenger program, in February in response to the recent safety issues, despite being at the company for 18 years, and has been replaced by Katie Ringgold.

The production issues have damaged the perception of Boeing planes, leading the company’s stock to decline over 35% since the start of the year as of Wednesday morning, according to Yahoo Finance. Customers of Boeing have also looked to pause their orders as safety issues remain unresolved, such as United Airlines, which paused its order of 737 Max 10 jets in early March.

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