Tax returns show increasing stability at USOC
May. 15, 2013
The U.S. Olympic Committee had revenues of $338 million in 2012 and did not have to pay any of its former executives, further signs of the organization's increased stability.
The 2012 tax forms filed Wednesday show an organization largely recovered from the chaos and turmoil that followed Jim Scherr's ouster as chief executive officer in 2009. For a second straight year, the USOC did not have any severance payments to former CEOs on its books — it was still paying two former CEOs along with its current head in 2010 — and Scott Blackmun's salary actually took a small dip. Blackmun was paid $729,337, about $13,000 less than he made in 2011.
The next highest-paid employee was chief marketing officer Lisa Baird, at $471,000. The only key employee to get a significant raise was Alan Ashley, chief of sports performance. Ashley, who is responsible for the U.S. team's performance at the Olympics and other big events, got a raise of about $28,000, to $283,000.
Revenues were well above the $141 million reported in 2011. Though that was expected because of payments associated with the Olympic TV contract in an Olympic year, it still was 20.3 percent higher than the $281 million the USOC reported in 2008, a more relevant comparison. The USOC also received $61 million in charitable donations in 2012, a $6 million increase over the previous year and second only to the record of nearly $67 million generated in 2010.
And in the surest sign of the USOC's success, it paid $6 million to Operation Gold, which rewards athletes for top finishes at the Olympics and other major events. The Americans topped the medal table in London with 104 medals; a gold was worth a $25,000 bonus, with $15,000 for silver and $10,000 for bronze.
Overall, the USOC had expenses of $247 million, also a big increase over 2011 ($185 million). A large portion of those expenses were grants to national governing bodies, including almost $4.7 million to USA Track and Field and $4.1 million to USA Swimming. Athletes from those two NGBs also generated the majority of medals in London, winning 60. The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association, always a big medal producer at the Winter Games and world championships, received $4.3 million.
U.S. Speedskating, which is facing a mutiny by some of its athletes, received $2.7 million. Some speedskaters have broken away from the governing body, claiming in a complaint to the USOC that the organization is incapable of carrying out its duties amid reports of financial woes and organizational infighting.
USA Wrestling, which faces an uncertain future after the International Olympic Committee recommended dropping it from the games beginning in 2020, received $1.5 million. U.S. wrestlers won four medals in London, two of them gold.