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Spire CEO's pay jumps 12% to $4.5 million

Spire CEO's pay jumps 12% to $4.5 million

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Spire, in a year when its earnings and stock price were rising, boosted Chief Executive Suzanne Sitherwood's pay 12% to $4.5 million.

Details of Sitherwood's pay were disclosed in a proxy statement filed Friday. Her salary was $900,096 after a 3% raise, and her $897,300 bonus was 99.7% of the target amount.

The biggest part of the CEO's compensation was $2.3 million in stock, but three-quarters of that amount is contingent on Spire's earnings and shareholder returns over a three-year period. For a similar award from 2017, Sitherwood and other executives received 97% of the target amount of stock.

Sitherwood's pay package also included a $210,953 increase in pension value, $35,735 in above-market interest on deferred compensation and perquisites valued at $30,900. The perquisites include life insurance, spousal travel, financial planning and wellness benefits.

Spire, a natural gas utility based in St. Louis, reported a 13% increase in earnings per share, before extraordinary items, for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30. Its share price rose 19%.

If Sitherwood leaves Spire after a takeover, her golden parachute would be worth $13.9 million. That includes $6.3 million in severance and bonus, $5 million worth of stock and $2.5 million from a deferred income plan.

Sitherwood earned 44 times as much as the median Spire employee. Median pay for the company's 3,536 workers was $103,826.

Here's what St. Louis CEOs earned in 2018:

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