This is actually a gross mischaracterization: Sometimes it is the basketball coach.
So begins Reuben Fischer-Baum’s infographic blogpost about public salaries across the country. You can see from Reuben’s map that both NYS and VT are part of that minority of ten states in which the highest public employee is either a public college dean or president.
This all reminds me of conversations I had as a teenager with my mother who shook her head at the imbalance in salaries across our society, and gasped with disbelief about the difference in, say, an actor’s salary and the pittance earned by a coal miner or family farmer. These are not publicly funded positions, but I think her concern is still relevant–it recognizes the peculiar value structure in our society, a value structure we’re all buying into when athletic coaches rank among the highest paid public employees.
So, who do you think should be the highest paid public employee in New York State or Vermont?