J.B. Hunt CEO John Roberts’ salary rises 3.2%, total compensation falls 85%

by Jeff Della Rosa (JDellaRosa@nwabj.com) 2,297 views 

John Roberts III, president and CEO of Lowell-based carrier J.B. Hunt Transport Services, received a 3.2% raise in 2017 and earned a base salary of $833,865, according to the company’s proxy statement filed Tuesday (March 13) with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Total compensation for the year declined 84.5% to $859,252 after the company moved the timing of when it awards performance-based shares. The company handed out the shares to its executive officers in January 2018. Roberts received $4.877 million in shares, up 5.7% from $4.616 million in shares in 2016.

Terrence Matthews, executive vice president and president of intermodal, received a 2.2% raise and earned a base salary of $490,202. Total compensation decreased 61.2% to $509,960. In January, Matthews received $1.746 million in shares, up 129.9% from $759,690 in shares in 2016.

David Mee, executive vice president of finance and administration and chief financial officer, received a 1.5% raise and earned a base salary of $488,154. Total compensation for the year fell 79.4% to $507,143. In January, Mee received $1.746 million in shares, down 8.1% from $1.899 million in 2016.

Shelley Simpson, executive vice president, chief commercial officer and president of highway services, received a 1.7% raise and earned a base salary of $485,000. Total compensation declined to 77.2% to $504,973. In January, Simpson received $1.746 million in shares, up 4.5% from $1.671 million in 2016.

Nicholas Hobbs, executive vice president and president of dedicated contract services, received a 4.4% raise to $475,000. Total compensation fell 77.5% to $493,788. In January, Hobbs received $1.746 million in shares, up 4.5%, from $1.671 million in 2016.

J.B. Hunt will host its annual shareholders meeting at 10 a.m. April 19 at its corporate office in Lowell, the proxy shows. Shareholders will have the opportunity to vote on two shareholder proposals. The first would require the company to report on its political contributions and its policy to make such contributions. The second would require the company to adopt “quantitative, science-based targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions” and report on its plans and progress toward achieving the targets.

The company expects its directors and executive officers to vote against the two proposals. The deadline to submit proposals for the 2019 meeting is Nov. 8.

Shareholders of record as of Feb. 13 will be allowed to vote in the 2018 meeting. Owners of the company’s 109.754 million shares of common stock are entitled to vote. Results of the vote will be reported in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission on April 19.

The existing 10 directors are seeking reelection to the company’s board: Douglas Duncan, Francesca Edwardson, Wayne Garrison, Sharilyn Gasaway, Gary George, Bryan Hunt, Coleman Peterson, Roberts, James Robo and chairman Kirk Thompson. In the meeting, shareholders will vote on whether to reelect the directors to the board for a one-year term.

As of Dec. 31, the following shareholders owned more than 5% of the company’s stock: company co-founder Johnelle Hunt of Rogers, 16.7%; Vanguard Group Inc. of Malvern, Pa., 8.9%; and BlackRock Inc. of New York, 5.5%.

Shares of J.B. Hunt (NASDAQ: JBHT) closed Tuesday at $121.99, up $1.17. In the past 52 weeks, the stock has traded between $126.49 and $83.35.