Corporate Boards

Forget CEO comp: Business and political honchos can pull down seven figures attending a few meetings. The Daily Beast ranks those who make the most as serial corporate boards directors.

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1, Shirley A. Jackson

Total compensation (2008-2010): $4,092,664

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: FedEx, Medtronic, Marathon Oil Company, NYSE Euronext, Public Service Enterprise Group, IBM

Jackson, a renowned theoretical physicist and former chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, keeps watch over six boards—more than any other director who ranked on this list. As the president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, she earns $1 million-plus at her day job. And that’s dwarfed by her side gigs.

2, Charles R. Lee

Total compensation (2008-2010): $3,489,599

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: DirecTV, Marathon Oil Company, Procter & Gamble, United Technologies, United States Steel

Lee was chairman and CEO of GTE Corp. beginning in 1992, and continued as the chairman and co-CEO of Verizon when the company formed from a merger between GTE and Bell Atlantic in 2000. He stepped down from Verizon in 2002, continuing as a non-executive chairman until 2003.

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3, Steven A. Raymund

Total compensation (2008-2010): $3,308,552

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Jabil Circuit, Tech Data, WESCO International

Raymund built his career at Tech Data, starting out as an operations manager and eventually became CEO from 1986 to 2006. He has served on Jabil’s board since 1996 and as a director of WESCO since 2006.

4, Enrique Hernandez Jr.

Total compensation (2008-2010): $3,294,283

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Chevron, McDonald's, Wells Fargo, Nordstrom

Despite being the chairman, CEO, and president of Inter-Con Security Systems, a position he’s held since 1984, Hernandez finds time to serve on four other corporate boards. He most recently joined the board of Chevron in 2008.

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5, Thomas J. Usher

Total compensation (2008-2010): $3,149,230

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Marathon Oil Company, PNC Financial Services, PPG Industries, H.J. Heinz

Usher is the former president, COO and chairman of USX Corp. (formerly United States Steel), the company where he started his career as a member of the industrial engineering department. He retired from USX’s board in 2006.

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6, Sam Nunn

Total compensation (2008-2010): $3,038,765

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Chevron, Dell, General Electric, Coca-Cola

Nunn is the co-chairman and CEO of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a nonprofit that works to reduce nuclear and chemical weapons threats, and an informal defense adviser to President Obama. He served as the senator of Georgia from 1972 to 1997 and was on the short-list to run on the ticket with John Kerry in 2004.

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7, William H. Gray

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,802,311

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Pfizer, Prudential Financial, JPMorgan Chase, Dell

A former congressman from Pennsylvania, Gray was the House Majority Whip from 1989 until 1991. He was president and CEO of the United Negro College Fund until 2004. He co-founded and serves as the co-chairman of lobbying firm Gray Loeffler.

8, James I. Cash, Jr.

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,793,823

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: General Electric, Microsoft, Walmart, Chubb

Cash was a faculty member of Harvard Business School for nearly 30 years, retiring in 2003 after stints as the chairman of the M.B.A. program and of HBS Publishing. He retired from the board of Microsoft in November 2009.

9, Richard B. Myers

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,676,707

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: United Technologies, Aon, Northrop Grumman, Deere & Co.

Myers is a retired U.S. Air Force general and the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, a position he held from 2001 to 2005. Aside from participating in five corporate boards (one of which, Rivada Networks, is not listed on the Fortune 500), he’s a military history professor at Kansas State University.

10, Linda Fayne Levinson

Total compensation (2008-2010): $ 2,665,153

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Ingram Micro, Jacobs Engineering Group, NCR, Western Union

A former partner at venture-capital firm GRP Partners, Levinson is now an adviser to private companies. She serves as a director on two additional boards—DemandTec and x1 Technologies—that do not rank among the Fortune 500.

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11, William D. Smithburg

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,606,142

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Abbott Laboratories, Corning, Northern Trust, Smurfit-Stone Container

Smithburg is the retired chairman, CEO and president of the Quaker Oats Company. He retired in 1997.

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12, Lynn M. Martin

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,558,279

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Procter & Gamble, Ryder, AT&T, Constellation Energy Group

A former U.S. representative from Illinois, Martin was rumored to be a potential running mate of President Geroge H.W. Bush in 1988. President Bush later appointed her to be the U.S. secretary of Labor. (She retired from Proctor & Gamble’s board this year.)

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13, Daniel A. Carp

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,544,888

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Delta Air Lines, Norfolk Southern, Texas Instruments, Liz Claiborne

Carp is the former CEO and chairman of Eastman Kodak; he stepped down in 2005. He serves as the non-executive chairman of Delta Air Lines.

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14, Leonard S. Coleman

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,533,650

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Avis Budget Group, Electronic Arts, H.J. Heinz, Omnicom Group

For five years beginning in 1994, Coleman was the president of the Major League Baseball’s National League. He is the chairman of the Jackie Robinson Foundation and previously served as the chairman of the Bishop Tutu Scholarship Fund.

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15, Roy J. Bostock

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,507,105

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Delta Air Lines, Morgan Stanley, Yahoo!

Bostock is the chairman of the Board of Yahoo! and the non-executive vice chairman of Delta’s Board. He’s also the chairman of the Partnership for a Drug-Free America. The Bostock Library at Duke University was named in connection with an $8 million donation.

16, Peter J. Fluor

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,492,416

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Anadarko Petroleum, Cameron International, Fluor, Devon Energy

Peter Fluor is the chairman and CEO of Texas Crude Energy, a private oil and gas company. He’s been a member of the Fluor board since 1984.

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17, Charlene Barshefsky

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,462,626

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: American Express, Estee Lauder, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Intel

Barshefsky is best known as the negotiator behind the World Trade Organization agreement forged with China during her tenure as the U.S. Trade Representative from 1997 to 2001. She’s a partner at D.C. law firm Wilmer Hale.

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18, Kenneth M. Duberstein

Total compensation (2008-2010): $ 2,454,493.00

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Boeing, ConocoPhillips, The Travelers Companies

Following a two-year stint as President Reagan’s White House chief of staff, Duberstein became chairman and CEO of consulting firm The Duberstein Group in 1989.

19, John F. Turner

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,450,681

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: American Electric Power Company, Ashland, Peabody Energy, International Paper

A former state legislator from Wyoming, Turner has served as the president and CEO of The Conservation Fund and the director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. He was also the assistant secretary of state for oceans and international and scientific affairs until 2005.

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20, Jack M. Greenberg

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,402,193

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Allstate, Manpower, Western Union, Abbott Laboratories

He’s the non-executive chairman of Western Union, but from 1998 to 2002 Greenberg was CEO of McDonald’s. He also serves on the board of Hasbro and Innerworkings, both companies that don’t crack the Fortune 500.

21, Hansel E. Tookes II

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,282,063

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Corning, Harris, NextEra Energy, Ryder

Tookes served as the president of Raytheon International and the CEO of Raytheon Aircraft from 1999 to 2002. For nearly 20 years prior to his time at Raytheon, he worked at United Technologies, eventually becoming president of Pratt and Whitney’s Large Military Engines Group.

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22, Alexis Herman

Total compensation (2008-2010): $ 2,273,846

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Cummins, Entergy, Coca-Cola, MGM Resorts International

Herman was the assistant to the president for public liaison under President Clinton, and in his second term became the first African-American secretary of labor. She is the co-chairperson of the Rules and Bylaws Committee of the DNC.

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23, Charles Noski

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,273,016

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Air Products & Chemicals, Morgan Stanley, Microsoft, Automatic Data Processing

Noski was named CFO of Bank of America in April 2010. He had previously been CFO at Northrup Grumman until 2005 and of AT&T from 1999 until 2002.

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24, Richard D. Parsons

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,203,416

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Citigroup, Time Warner, Estee Lauder

At the end of the year in 2007, Parsons stepped down as the CEO of Time Warner, a position he held since 2001 (and ascended to from his position on the board). Before that, he was the CEO of the Dime Savings Bank. He has been chairman of Citigroup since 2009.

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25, James S. Crown

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,156,972

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: General Dynamics, JPMorgan Chase, Sara Lee

Crown, the son of Chicago billionaire Lester Crown, has a law degree from Stanford.

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26, W. James Farrell

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,134,752

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Abbott Laboratories, Allstate, 3M, United Continental Holdings

Farrell was one of the nation’s leading gearheads until he retired as chairman of Illinois Tool Works in 2006 (he retired as CEO 2005).

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27, Gordon M. Bethune

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,111,967

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Prudential Financial, Sprint Nextel, Honeywell International

Bethune was the CEO of Continental Airlines until 2004.

28, James A. Unruh

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,077,973

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Qwest Communications International, Tenet Healthcare, Prudential Financial

Unruh is a graduate of Jamestown College and received his M.B.A. from the University of Denver. Since 1998 he has been principal of Alerion Capital Group.

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29, James H. Hance, Jr.

Total compensation (2008-2010): $2,062,169

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Duke Energy, Morgan Stanley, Sprint Nextel

Another Sprint board member, Hance was elected last summer to become a director of Morgan Stanley. He’s also a board member of Washington University in St. Louis.

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30, John W. Rogers, Jr.

Total compensation (2008-2010): $1,901,671

Fortune 500 Board Directorships: Exelon, McDonald's, Aon

Rogers, Jr. is best known for founding Ariel Investments (formerly Ariel Capital Management), the largest minority-operated mutual fund in the nation. He has been on the board of Exelon since October 2000 and previously served as a director for Bank One and Bally Total Fitness.