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DMA board member wages proxy fight

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New York—As the Direct Marketing Association gears up for its annual conference and exposition, DMA09, next month in San Diego, a rearguard proxy fight by a DMA board member is urging reforms of association policies and executive compensation.

In an e-mail sent to fellow board members Friday, DMA board member Gerry Pike, president of direct marketing company DMSA Inc., criticized rising membership dues, the association’s level of political advocacy on behalf of direct marketing and steps he said he considers violations of the association’s bylaws in setting the compensation of DMA President John A. Greco.

“We’re looking to do three things in San Diego,” Pike said in an interview Monday. “First, to ensure that members come first; second, to vigorously do what is required to get management compensation back in line with industry standards; and, third, to make DMA relevant again.”

Pike has launched a Web site (www.abetterdma.org) urging DMA members to send him their voting proxies, giving him leverage in addressing his concerns at DMA’s business meeting Oct. 18 during DMA09.

Because of his ongoing criticisms of DMA’s operations, Pike said, he was the only member of the current board not to be renominated for another three-year term.

According to The NonProfit Times, Greco earned $768,748 in fiscal year 2008, plus $128,194 in contributions to benefit and deferred compensation plans. The publication cited an Internal Revenue Service form 990 filing.

In an e-mail response, issued to DMA members late Friday, Greco and Kelly B. Browning, DMA chairman, defended the association’s operations as well as Greco’s salary, saying, “...when someone communicates partial information and engages in misrepresentation and innuendo, a full review of the facts is needed.”

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