Former Grammy CEO Neil Portnow made a pretty penny before he stepped down from his leadership role at the Recording Academy, amid scandalous allegations including an alleged rape and misogynistic behavior.
Portnow’s compensation increased by 41 percent — or almost $800,000 — in the year before he left his position with the academy, according to a report from TheWrap.
Portnow, who had led the Grammys since 2002, earned more than $1.8 million in 2016, and more than $2.63 million in 2017, according to IRS filings.
Portnow’s salary was also $1 million more than what his successor, Deborah Dugan, was able to earn in her first year, according to the report. It is estimated that her total salary, including a bonus, would have been about $1.4 million.
Dugan was put on administrative leave after about six months on the job.
A spokesperson for the Recording Academy did not immediately return FOX Business' request for comment regarding Portnow's earnings.
Portnow is defending himself against rape allegations made by Dugan, who lodged a complaint that detailed her accusations with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission regarding her dismissal from the Recording Academy.
Portnow “unequivocally” denied the claims in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter last month.
“The allegations of rape are ludicrous, and untrue. The suggestion that there was is disseminating a lie,” Portnow said. “I will vigorously defend all false claims made against me in this document.”
The lawsuit filed by Dugan’s lawyers accuses Portnow of raping a female recording artist and claims that was the “real reason his contract was not renewed.” Dugan’s lawsuit also alleges he made misogynistic comments and “resigned in disgrace.”
Dugan was placed on administrative leave over alleged misconduct. The New York Times was the first to report that a complaint had been filed accusing Dugan of employing a bullying management style and acting in a "hostile manner" toward an executive assistant.
In her complaint, Dugan alleges that her removal was based on an email she sent to human resources that detailed complaints of sexual harassment against a man serving as general counsel to the Academy.
Three weeks prior to her dismissal, Dugan had purportedly sent the email to the academy’s head of human resources regarding her sexual harassment claims and concerns about the governance at the organization, including voting irregularities, financial mismanagement and conflicts of interest. The email characterized the culture at the Academy as a “boy’s club,” according to the complaint.
She notified the group in December that she planned to pursue legal claims. Negotiations ensued and a settlement was nearly reached, but the Academy allegedly pulled back and presented her with a different deal she was not prepared to accept. After the deadline for her acceptance expired, she was immediately put on administrative leave, according to the legal filing.
A representative for the Recording Academy said the group immediately launched independent investigations to review Dugan's potential misconduct and allegations, which remain ongoing.