McDonald's CEO Chris Kempczinski Isn't Hurting Financially as Layoffs Begin

As president and CEO of McDonald’s, Chris Kempczinski is by far the highest-paid employee at the company. What's his net worth amid company layoffs?

Danielle Letenyei - Author

Apr. 3 2023, Published 12:09 p.m. ET

Chris Kempczinski
Source: McDonald's

McDonald’s corporate employees are working from home this week, nervously awaiting a possible virtual call telling them they are no longer employed with the company.

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Last week, McDonald’s office employees in the U.S. and some internationally received an internal email telling them all U.S.-based offices, including its headquarters in Chicago, would be closed April 3–5 and that they should work remotely. Layoffs at the company have been expected since January when McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczinski told The Wall Street Journal that the company would be making a “workforce adjustment” in April.

“Some jobs that are existing today are either going to get moved, or those jobs may go away,” Kempczinski told the WSJ in January.

Amid all the turmoil, what's Chris Kempczinski's net worth? Let's just say, he isn't hurting financially.

Source: Getty Images
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What is Chris Kempczinski’s net worth?

As president and CEO of McDonald’s, Kempczinski is by far the highest-paid employee at the company. According to Wallmine, Kempczinski has a net worth of at least $23.5 million.

Chris Kempczinski

McDonald's President and CEO

Net worth: $23.5 Million

Chris Kempczinski has been at the helm of McDonald's Corporation since 2019. The Chicago-based company sent a memo to employee telling them to work from home this week while the company does some restructuring. Kempczinski indicated in January that some employees may lose their jobs, but the company has not announced how many will be laid off.

Age: 55

Birthplace: Boston, Mass.

Education: Duke University (BA), Harvard University (MBA)

Marital status: Married

Kids: 2

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In 2020, Kempczinski’s total compensation was over $10.8 million, reports His compensation that year included a salary of $963,506 plus more than $4.7 million in stock options and $4.7 million in stock.

Meanwhile, the average base salary for a McDonald’s corporate employee is about $66,000 per year, reports

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How long has Chris Kempczinski been McDonald’s CEO?

A graduate of Duke University (BA) and Harvard (MBA), Kempczinski has been with McDonald’s since 2016, when he joined the company’s global strategy team. Prior to his role at McDonald’s, he held senior positions with Procter & Gamble, PepsiCo, and Kraft Foods.

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Kempczinski was promoted to president of McDonald’s USA in 2016. In that role, he led the business operations of about 14,000 McDonald’s locations across the country. In 2019, Kempczinski was named CEO after McDonald’s fired former CEO Steve Easterbrook over a consensual relationship he had with an employee.

Kempczinski came under fire in 2019 over a text he sent to Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot regarding the separate shooting deaths of two children in the city. He reportedly texted the shootings were “tragic” and then appeared to blame the victim’s parents, texting, “With both, the parents failed those kids, which I know is something you can’t say. Even harder to fix.”

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After an uproar from the community and McDonald’s employees, Kempczinski apologized for the comment, saying he had a “very narrow world view” that “revealed that ignorance,” the WSJ reported.

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How many employees will be impacted by the McDonald’s layoffs?

How many McDonald’s corporate employees will be laid off is currently unknown. The company employs over 150,000 people across the globe, 70 percent of which are outside of the U.S., the WSJ reports. In the memo to employees, McDonald’s executives said they are closing offices this week and asking employees to work from home to “ensure the comfort and confidentiality of our people during the notification period.”

“We will communicate key decisions related to roles and staffing levels across the organization,” the memo reads. “We are committed to our values guiding our decisions, how we communicate those changes, and how we will support every member of the company.”

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