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Kevin Kuschel

Senior Vice President

Kevin Kuschel joined the NFP Compensation Consulting team in 2009 and is currently the Senior Vice President. Mr. Kuschel is a Certified Executive Compensation Professional, Certified Compensation Professional, Senior Professional of Human Resources, and is Compensation Committee Certified. He holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Houston. Prior to joining NFP Compensation Consulting , he spent five years with Sysco Corporation in the human resources and HRIS departments. Mr. Kuschel is a member of Houston Compensation and Benefits Association and WorldatWork.

Executive Summary

Mr. Kuschel specializes in the analysis and design of executive and director compensation programs in both the public and private sector. In addition, Kevin has experience in corporate human resources, with a specific emphasis on HRIS and financial metrics analysis. He has consulted with clients across a wide range of industries, varying in revenue size from less than $1 million to $100 billion. Mr. Kuschel has authored and edited articles related to executive compensation and served as a co-contributor to many of NFPCC’s recent publications.

Executive Compensation Consulting Experience

  • Reviewed, analyzed, and designed competitive executive compensation programs including base salary, annual incentives, and long-term incentives.
  • Reviewed, analyzed and designed competitive board of director compensation programs.
  • Conducted reviews on Annual Incentive programs and designed competitive bonus structures in public and private companies.
  • Conducted reviews on Long-Term Incentive plans and designed competitive programs for public and private companies including stock options, restricted stock, performance shares and phantom stock.
  • Designed compensation programs for companies involved in turnaround situations, initial public offerings (IPO) and mergers and acquisitions.
  • Designed international executive total direct compensation packages.
  • Analyzed and reviewed executive employment contract provisions.
  • Provided consulting services for cases of under-compensation.
  • Modeled stock option awards through Black-Scholes and targeted gain approaches, including the valuation and strategies surrounding underwater options.
  • Provided analysis for litigation support engagements related to reasonable compensation, bankruptcy, employment contracts, shareholder oppression, and wrongful death.
  • Conducted job evaluation, job analysis and job classification studies for clients in various industries.
  • Reviewed and designed salary structures.


  • Texas Monthly Magazine, Best Companies to Work for in Texas, 2011 – 2020, ranked in the top 3 for 2011 – 2014
  • Houston’s Best & Brightest Companies to Work For 2014, 2019 and 2020
  • Houston Business Journal, Fast 100 List, 2018
  • Consulting Magazine, Rising Stars of the Profession – 35 under 35, 2018
  • Consulting Magazine, Fastest Growing Firms, 2017 and 2018
  • Houston Business Journal, Best Places to Work, 2010 – 2012 and 2017, ranked in the top 10 the first three years
  • Forbes, America’s Best Management Consulting Firms, 2016


Bachelor of Science – University of Houston, Houston, Texas


Senior Vice President, NFP Compensation Consulting

Co-Chief Operating Officer & Mountain States Practice Leader, NFP Compensation Consulting
Managing Partner, NFP Compensation Consulting
Director, NFP Compensation Consulting
Senior Consultant, NFP Compensation Consulting
Consultant, NFP Compensation Consulting
HRIS Analyst, Sysco Corporation
Payroll Coordinator, Sysco Corporation

Registered Trademarks Compensation/Business Processes Obtained

Weapons of Mass Excess™/WME™
NFP Compensation Consulting

Professional Affiliations

Mr. Kuschel is a member of WorldatWork (formerly American Compensation Association) and Houston Compensation and Benefits Association

Certifications and Licenses

Certified Executive Compensation Professional (CECP) – WorldatWork
Certified Compensation Professional (CCP) – WorldatWork
Compensation Committee Certified (CCC) – Economic Research Institute
Senior Professional Human Resources (SPHR) – HR Certification Institute

Publications – Books

The Power of Restricted Stock: The Definitive Guide to a Resurging Long-Term Incentive FASB & AJCA
Update Edition, WorldatWork 2006. As a co-contributor, Mr. Kuschel assisted in the research, writing, and reviewing of this publication.

Publications – Articles Featured

“Job openings reflect growing confidence in midstream industry”, by Nischinta Amarnath, S&P Global Market Intelligence, June 29, 2016.

“Survey Reveals Midstream Companies Focusing on Retention Efforts”, by Valerie Jones, Rigzone, July 21, 2016.

“Midstream: A Silver Lining in Oil, Gas Downturn?”, by Valerie Jones, Rigzone, March 29,2016.

“Setting Your Compensation Committee Calendar”, by Ralph Ward, Boardroom Insider, December 2015.

“American Airlines CEO Gives Up Cash in Shift to Stock Only”, by Mary Schlangenstein and Thomas Black,, April 22, 2015.

“What to look for in J.C. Penney’s filing to shareholders next week”, by Maria Halkias, Dallas, March 21, 2013.

“Why Natural Gas Companies are at Risk of Failing SOP”, by Howard Risher, Compensation & Benefits Review, July 1, 2012.

“Say on Pay: Natural Gas Faces an Uphill Battle”, by Aparna Prusty, Sage Publications, May/June 2012 vol. 44.

“Young Consultants: How to Work with the Generation Gap”, by Collin Eaton, Houston Business Journal, May 15, 2012.

All Posts By Kevin Kuschel

Executive Pay: It’s Not All About Performance

While not all pay is justifiable, executive compensation continues to be unnecessarily painted in a severely negative light. In the world of governance, it is a common topic which bands together the masses against the few, falsely highlighting inequity and greed. While several cases of this nature do exist, they are highly uncommon and are the exception, not the rule when...

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Rising Compensation Challenges and How to Mitigate Them

Inflation, threats of recession, and high employee turnover are just a few of the issues Boards and management teams must contend with in 2023. These challenges are coupled with increased regulations, continued shareholder institution noise, and the SEC continuing to impose greater requirements on executive compensation disclosure. Needless to say, more companies are finding themselves between a rock and a...

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Executive Retention Strategies in a Turnover-Heavy Market

“Where have all the people gone?” An HR executive recently posed this question, a question to which an answer is unclear. He was right, where are they? Turnover is on the rise and hiring more difficult than ever. There just doesn’t seem to be a pool of talent, and where talent exists, the cost of acquiring them, or even retaining...

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2022 Proxy Season: A Peek into Developing Trends

As we hit the midpoint of the 2022 proxy season, shareholders and investors continue to shift focus towards untraditional topics compared to the prior year's proxy seasons. At the forefront of these conversations sits ESG (environmental, social, and governance) and human capital management (HCM) matters. Boards are now establishing committees specific to such issues as human rights/diversification, sustainability and environmental...

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ESG & Executive Compensation: A Deeper Look Inside the Growing Trend

Effective compensation programs have a strong circular relationship between measurable goals, tangible performance, and actual payouts. This is true whether the goal or goals are short-term or long-term in nature. But what happens when the lines between goals and performance become blurred? Do the compensation programs themselves cease to carry the same power to influence actions? Or even more concerning,...

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Peer VS. Competitor: The Importance of Distinction for Executive Compensation

  Impacts of a global pandemic, volatility in the markets, bankruptcies and consolidation through M&A activity has created a new business landscape… one no industry has completed escaped. The one area this impacts meaningfully is peer selection for compensation peer groups. To be sure, choosing a peer group can be a frustrating necessary task, exacerbated further by a shrinking universe...

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Compensation in a Remote Work Environment

Introduction Over the last 10 months, we have watched many companies across the US begin to shift from a traditional work landscape to a “work from home” environment. The cause? An on-going global pandemic. What appears to be one of the greatest human capital management endeavors in a generation, recent events have prompted remote work opportunities faster than any other...

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The Attraction and Retention Paradigm

BUILDING SUCCESS THROUGH TALENT ACQUISITION AND PRESERVATION The importance of employee attraction and retention on overall business success is an often-debated issue. Although two very divergent schools of thought exist — either employees as assets or employees as expenses — everyone agrees on one thing: Employees are necessary to operate a business and employees want to feel valued. It has...

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Industry Consolidation and Its Effects on Compensation

The corporate structure over the past 30 years has been predicated mainly around the regulations necessitated by actions taken by corporations that have ultimately resulted in negative consequences. A constant balancing act of an open-market economy vs. necessary regulation has seen corporations combat the forces of what they can and cannot do. Now, as we endure yet another macro-economic financial...

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Pre-Petition Retention Awards: Important Tools or Excuses for Excessive Compensation?

/ BANKRUPTCY COMPENSATION The concept of excessive executive compensation is a seemingly frequent topic that garners significant reaction regardless of personal viewpoints. The essence of the topic is intended to elicit a moral response, asking us to question fairness in the context of our own situations. Everyone seeks what is fair (not to be confused with equal) believing that a...

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The Board’s Role in Managing Crisis

As many of us settle into what has become a new normal, businesses are feeling the wave of negative effects the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has brought to the American economy and are desperately trying to navigate the challenges brought forth by this crisis. For many it has meant salary cuts, furloughed employees and altered every-day business operations. But how should boards...

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COVID-19 and Compensation: What to Think About

According to a recent survey by Willis Towers Watson, in mid-February some 15% of participant companies expected material impacts from COVID-19 to persist over the next six months. As we all know, the situation has continued to evolve around the world, injecting increasing levels of uncertainty in the corporate world, sending financial markets into disarray and adding to our worries...

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Establishing and Maintaining Pay Equity

In a previous article written by NFPCC in 2018, the growing concern of gender pay gaps and how they impact attraction and retention issues in corporate America was addressed. Through this process, it was discovered that the issue of the pay equity gap really was not as serious as previously thought – at least to the extent as portrayed in...

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Election Year and Its Effects on Compensation

Every January, NFPCC purposes to focus on major events that will shape the compensation landscape in the new year. In 2020, the biggest factor that will impact the future of compensation packages and organizational success/profitability, that is a certainty, is the 2020 presidential election this November. As NFPCC has attended many board meetings over the fourth quarter of 2019 and...

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NFPCC Original Article: The Discussion on Director Pay

.. Not to be left out of the transformative world we are living in today, corporate governance norms, board compositions, and board compensation are undergoing material change. As many companies are entering the time of year where they review their director pay programs, we thought it timely to touch on this topic, review some trends taking hold and put forth some...

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NFPCC Original Article: Process for Pay in “BK” (Bankruptcy)

FINANCIAL RESTRUCTURINGS, WHILE NOT AN ENJOYABLE PROCESS, ARE SOMETIMES A NECESSARY STEP TO ENSURE FUTURE FINANCIAL SUCCESS. In order to achieve a successful restructuring, companies need to deploy the right compensation strategies in this volatile environment that will retain and motivate key talent to see the process through. In this article, we review the tools available to companies going through...

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NFPCC ORIGINAL ARTICLE: Pay-for-Performance – Not Just a Public Company Phrase

Everyone talks about it, but no one seems to know how to perfectly achieve it…pay-for-performance. We see it everywhere, on the sports fields and in the boardroom, everyone wants to correlate pay with performance. This desire has led to the continual search for the newest and best methods to achieve perfect correlation, yet still, none have found it. Likely because...

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NFPCC Original Article: Compensation Landmines & Key Issues

“I would not give a fig for the simplicity this side of complexity, but I would give my life for the simplicity on the other side of complexity”. Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. Executive compensation practice and application is continually developing based on proxy advisory firm influence and institutional shareholder desire. Listing standards related to independence requirements for compensation committee members...

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NFPCC Original Article: NFPCC’s Response to HBR’s “Decoding CEO Pay”

There was an article titled “Decoding CEO Pay” recently published in Harvard Business Review, and in our opinion here at NFP Compensation Consulting, Messrs. Pozen and Kothari have some valid points, and many that are not so valid. It appears they found a few unique, obscure examples and turned them into this “bad compensation practices” article, and we would like...

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NFPCC Original Article: CEO Pay Ratio – Winter is Coming

“Winter is coming” – a household phrase for those familiar with the Game of Thrones television series and book adaptation. Applied in the context of corporate issuers – CEO Pay Ratio is coming! Are you prepared? Are you familiar with how to run the calculation? Do you know where you plan to include in the proxy in 2018? With ratio-related...

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The M&A Lynchpin: Success or Failure Starts with HR

The market for merger and acquisition ("M&A") activity increased sharply in 2014, largely as a result of the abundance of available cash and zero interest rate policies. According to a recent Proxy Mosaic analysis, the US market announced 9,814 deals amounting to over $1.5 trillion in value. Numbers for 2015 look even higher and 2016 seems to be on a...

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Shareholder Outreach Works!

The Dodd-Frank Act was passed several years ago, and since then NFP Compensation Consulting has been helping companies reach out to their shareholders, stakeholders, and advisory groups to educate, discuss and update issues around governance and compensation. We have always contended that outreach works. In fact, due to outreach efforts, one of our clients went from below 50% approval Say On...

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Chipotle Shareholder Overreach

It doesn’t always feel like it, but shareholder votes on executive compensation are actually non-binding. Today, it seems that shareholders’ voices are growing more and more influential and their “non-binding” votes are wielding more and more power. And unfortunately, the responses the shareholders receive to their influence are setting precedents and solidifying their power to steer the direction of compensation...

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NFPCC Original Article: There’s a New Sheriff in Town – 162(m) Compliance

Navigating the treacherous waters of regulatory reform and ensuring compliance with the countless rules and regulations imposed under the current administration places significant constraints on a company’s time and resources. Therefore, keeping up-to-date on current regulations becomes even more imperative. Staying knowledgeable and aware of the details of the regulations, as well as recent changes, is the only way to...

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Golden Parachutes Under Fire: Provisions, Triggers, Benefits and Alternatives of a Change-in-Control

Change-in-control (“CIC”) provisions for public company executives have re-emerged on radar screens of shareholder activists and regulators due to recent executive pay legislations, such as December 16, 2009, increased Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) disclosures and Troubled Asset Relief Program (“TARP”) regulations.  These have intensified the need for companies to review their CIC agreements to ascertain they are aligned with...

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