Top 10 Retail CIO Salaries: J.C. Penney, Blockbuster, Wal-Mart New To The List

Retail CIOs pulled in some decent dollars last year, with Best Buy's Bob Willett topping the list at $8.6 million, next to Amazon's H. Brian Valentine at $3.9 million, J.C. Penney's Thomas Nealan at $2.1 million and AutoZone's William Giles at $1.8 million, according to the latest list compiled by RISNews.

Some of the execs didn't earn their cash solely from cache, if you will, as they held dual titles. AutoZone's Giles and Best Buy's Willett, for example, also hold the respective titles of AutoZone CFO and CEO of Best Buy International.

Among the new names on the list beyond Nealan and Giles were the CIOs from Blockbuster (Keith Morrow, formerly 7-Eleven's CIO, at $1.1 million), Wal-Mart (Rollin Ford at $646,000) and Guess (Michael Relich at $875,000). Other names on the list were Big Lots' Lisa Bachmann at $1.6 million, Children's Place's Richard Flaks (who holds the title of SVP Planning, Allocation and IT) at $983,000 and Publix Supermarkets' Laurie Douglas at $540,000.

RISNews reported that many of the listed execs did far better than the prior year, with some almost doubling their annual compensation. But the publication added that the list might be far from complete.

"Research for our report was based on public proxy statements filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The SEC mandates that public companies file a report on what their top five highest paid executives earn in terms of salary, bonuses and incentives," the story said. "It is likely that many large retailers, such as Costco, for example, have highly paid CIOs, but since more than five executives at these companies are more highly paid the CIO salaries do not appear in publicly available records. Also, it is equally likely that several private companies have highly paid CIOs, but since these companies do not file the same SEC reports there is no public record to review."

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