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Ex-Amazon exec paid $800,000 to run Bezos’ preschool network: report

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  • Jeff Bezos’ nonprofit preschool reportedly paid executives significantly above average salaries in 2021.
  • The president and chief operating officer of Bezos Academy were both longtime Amazon employees.
  • For most of last year, Bezos Academy consisted of just one location with 13 students.

Jeff Bezos hired ex-Amazon employees to run his Montessori-inspired tuition-free preschool system, and he reportedly paid them a small fortune to do it.

According to an annual tax form analyzed by Bloomberg, Michael George received $800,452 plus $28,000 in benefits for overseeing Bezos Academy in 2021, which included just one school and just 13 students for most of the year. last year.

George spent more than 20 years at Amazon and led consumer projects like Amazon Echo and Alexa, according to the Bezos Academy website.

Total Compensation Solution data collected by Bloomberg shows George’s salary is significantly higher than that of a median nonprofit director, which was $294,000 in 2021.

George’s salary is “within a reasonable range of market-competitive prices,” Bezos Academy told Bloomberg.

Bloomberg also discovered that another former Amazon employee on pre-K staff also received a large sum. Miguel Roque, chief operating officer of Bezos Academy, was paid $463,144 in 2021. Roque was at Amazon for 9 years.

The Bezos Academy prioritizes children from underserved communities, is free, and “aims to develop every child’s potential to become a creative leader, original thinker, and lifelong learner,” its website says.

Katie Ford, spokeswoman for the nonprofit, told Bloomberg that Bezos Academy plans to open 15 more schools by the end of 2023.

Bezos has turned to charity since stepping down as CEO of Amazon. Last month, Bezos signed the “Giving Pledge,” which is “a pledge by the wealthiest individuals and families in the world to dedicate the majority of their wealth to charitable causes,” according to the pledge’s website.

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