Andrew Puzder Net Worth: Here's what we know about the millionaire CEO of CKE Restaurants

ByJames Dennin

News surfaced on Thursday that President-elect Donald Trump is planning to choose controversial fast food CEO Andrew Puzder for secretary of the Department of Labor.

Though reports differ on exactly how much Puzder is worth, they suggest he is at least a millionaire, so his appointment would further balloon the collective net worth of Trump's Cabinet, which is already the richest in modern history.

Back in 2010, Puzder helped take once-public CKE Restaurants private by selling the company to Apollo Equities, a private equity fund that specializes in helping to turn around troubled businesses. 

That has helped shield a lot of the details about Puzder's compensation from the public eye. In fact, Puzder told the St. Louis Business Journal that the "most positive" aspect of the sale for him was that "we no longer have all the regulatory requirements that come with being a public company."

Corporate profile pages on Bloomberg and Equilar don't list any compensation information for Puzder. In 2014, the Huffington Post and Mother Jones reported a 2012 salary figure for Puzder of more than $4 million — via Forbes — but Puzder's corporate profile on Forbes appears to have since been deleted.

Dave Rowland/Getty Images

Based on other evidence, outlined below, it seems likely Puzder is at least a millionaire — although possibly not quite as wealthy as some of the other heavy-hitters among Trump's chosen Cabinet. Education secretary pick Betsy DeVos, for example, has an estimated net worth of more than $5 billion, and commerce secretary pick Wilbur Ross' net worth is close to $3 billion.

What to know about Andrew Puzder's salary and net worth

• In 2009, Puzder's annual compensation totaled $7.35 million, according to Graphiq

• When CKE was last a public company, in 2010, Puzder owned about two million shares worth $25.6 million, according to SEC filings analyzed by the St. Louis Business Journal.

• In 2011, Puzder reportedly earned $10.1 million in compensation, according to the Pacific Coast Business Times.

• Under Puzder's tenure, CKE offered corporate perks to executives worth a total of $241,000 for expenses like club memberships and personal use of the company aircraft, according to the Pacific Coast Business Times.

As secretary of the Department of Labor, Puzder will be in charge of protecting workers and enforcing workplace laws regarding wage theft. 

According to an OC Register report, Puzder has often criticized workplace protection laws — like those requiring lunch breaks — as bad for business.

A representative from CKE Restaurants didn't respond to request for comment by press time.

You can read more about Andrew Puzder here.