Frost Bank’s CEO, Phil Green, took a 20% cut to his compensation last year amid low interest rates, depressed oil prices, and a tightened pandemic economy.

Green, officially the chairman and CEO of Cullen/Frost Bankers Inc., Frost Bank’s parent, took home $3.82 million in 2020, down from the $4.76 million he was compensated in 2019, according to a filing submitted Tuesday to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The bank’s 11 top executives under Green all volunteered to take a 10% cut to their base salaries, as well as smaller bonuses and reduced long-term incentives.

Phil Green, Frost chairman and CEO. Credit: Courtesy / Frost

The filing said the cuts were necessary “in order for the executive team to show leadership consistent with our culture, as the entire company undertook broad-based cost-reductions needed in the operating environment.”

The cuts were announced last year during an earnings call, when Green told analysts that the actions were a matter of leadership.

“All of us at Frost and all our lines of business will face these challenges together, and our company, as always, will emerge stronger than ever,” he said.

Frost cut 68 positions in January, marking the San Antonio-based company’s first layoffs since 2002. Frost Bank employs a total of roughly 4,700 workers across Texas.

The company fell roughly $65 million short of its 2020 revenue target, as it aimed for $389 million but only reached $324 million. In the filing, the company said this was “due in large part to the unprecedented effects of the global pandemic coupled with the low interest rate environment and energy price declines.”

The executives whose compensation was detailed in the filing were:

  • Jerry Salinas, group executive vice president and chief financial officer, whose compensation dropped from $1.6 million in 2019 to $1.3 million in 2020.
  • Paul Bracher, president of Cullen/Frost, group executive vice president, and chief banking officer of Frost Bank, whose compensation dropped from $1.7 million in 2019 to $1.4 million in 2020.
  • Pat Frost, group executive vice president and president of Frost Bank, whose compensation dropped from $1.6 million in 2019 to $1.2 million in 2020.
  • Bill Perotti, group executive vice president and chief risk officer for Frost Bank, whose compensation dropped from $1.6 million in 2019 to $1.2 million in 2020.

The cuts for all represented a roughly 20% drop. The filing said the bonuses were the lowest for named executive officers in 11 years.

While the coronavirus pandemic has affected its revenue negatively, Frost has taken a sizable role in processing Paycheck Protection Program loans. Banks earn fees for processing these loans, and Frost recently ranked No. 15 in the nation for dollars loaned, despite only being the 49th largest bank in the country. For the latest round, which ends March 31, Frost has so far processed 9,539 loans for $1.01 billion, bank spokesman Bill Day said. More are being processed.

The bank has also been working to process forgiveness for the more than 19,000 loans it made for the program last year, Day said, with 7,301 having already been forgiven.

In January, Green was named chairman-elect for the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce.

Frost Bank is a financial supporter of the San Antonio Report member. For a full list of business members, click here

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Waylon Cunningham

Waylon Cunningham covered business and technology for the San Antonio Report.