Google has since lured her away and will pay her more than $70 million for her first year as CFO there. Investors have warmly welcomed her arrival at Google, where she is expected to bring some financial discipline to what some consider their free-spending ways.
The increased responsibility and visibility has helped some women CFOs rise even further, to CEO. Indra Nooyi, CEO of PepsiCo and Lynn Good, CEO of Duke Energy are both former CFOs.
"It's a unique position that has the ability to contribute to day-to-day operations but also on long-term strategic planning," Good said. She called the CFO position "a critical training ground" for aspiring CEOs.
The other top-paid female CFOs, after Porat, include Marianne Lake of JPMorgan Chase, whose compensation package is valued at $9.1 million, Catherine Lesjak of Hewlett-Packard at $8 million, Sharon McCollam at Best Buy at $7 million and Robin Washington of Gilead Sciences at $6.2 million. This ranking reflects only the companies where the CFOs who have served two consecutive years in their particular position.
To calculate pay, Equilar adds salary, bonus, perks, stock awards, stock option awards and other pay components. To determine what stock and option awards are worth, Equilar uses the value of an award on the day it is granted, as shown in a company's proxy statement.
The high median pay for female CFOs is partly a result of sample size — there were only 60 female CFOs at the S&P 500 companies that qualified for inclusion in the study during the last fiscal year, compared with 437 men, according to Equilar.
It is also a factor in female CEO pay. Median CEO pay for women was $15.9 million last year, according to an analysis done earlier this year by Equilar and the AP, compared with $10.4 million for male CEOs. There were just 17 female CEOs, however.