Footnote of the year…

As a daily newspaper reporter and editor, I used to hate this time of year: there was a daily section to fill and not all that much going on. Most papers fill the gap by doing lots of year in review pieces. I didn’t want to do that on, but I couldn’t resist naming a footnote of the year. And the winner is (drum roll please)…..

Kerr McGee (KMG) which on April Fool’s Day (coincidence?) filed this proxy which had my favorite footnote of the year:

An annual stipend provided to facilitate involvement in community activities accounted for 96% of Mr. Corbett’s Other Annual Compensation in 2004

Those of you who have heard me speak over the past year know I mention this footnote a lot. Why? Because it’s one of the best examples of corporate excess — not all that far removed from $6,000 shower curtains. Most of us, myself included, volunteer our time to give back to our communities or organizations that are important to us. When someone gets paid — Corbett’s stipend was over $80K in 2004 — it kind of defeats the purpose of volunteering. And since Corbett already made $3 million in salary and bonus alone in 2004, the idea of having to pay him something extra to donate his time is simply reprehensible.

I’d like to wish all readers a happy and healthy 2006. To those who send me tips, please keep them coming since it’s simply impossible for me to get to every filing. I’ll be back on Tuesday.