Seattle CEO Who Cut His Salary So Employees Made $70K Resigns

SEATTLE (AP) – A Seattle CEO who announced in 2015 that he was giving himself a drastic pay cut to cover the cost of major raises for his employees has announced his resignation.

Dan Price, the controversial CEO of credit card processing company Gravity Payments, resigned on Wednesday, The Seattle Times reported.

Price stunned his 100-plus employees when he told them he was cutting his salary from about $1 million to $70,000 and using the company profits to make sure everyone there would earn at least that much within three years.

“My number 1 priority is that our employees work for the best company in the world, but my presence here has become a distraction,” Price wrote in a statement on Twitter. He founded the company 18 years ago.

“I must also relinquish these duties to focus full-time on fighting false accusations leveled against me,” he wrote. “I’m going nowhere.”

Earlier this year, prosecutors in Seattle charged Price with a felony against a woman and reckless driving. According to prosecutors, Price tried to kiss a woman violently. In May, he pleaded not guilty; the case is still ongoing.

Price, 38, has also faced other legal problems. His brother Lucas sued him in 2015 because Dan Price paid himself too much. A judge in King County ruled that Dan had not violated Lucas’ rights as a minority shareholder.

Allegations that Price abused ex-wife Kristie Colon also surfaced that year. A Bloomberg report told of an October 2015 TEDx talk delivered by Colon, in which she described being beaten and waterboarded by her ex, without mentioning Price. Price told Bloomberg that those events “never happened.”

Chief Operating Officer Tammi Kroll will take over a CEO.

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