Local Culinary instructor featured in PARADE’s ‘What People Earn’ issue

Parade Magazine
Monday, April 16, 2012 - 2:46am

NATIONAL NEWS — PARADE’s 30th annual What People Earn report, one of our most popular features which takes a peek at how much money Americans make, is out today, Sunday, April 15, and a Baton Rouge resident made it to the cover.

What People Earn, PARADE’s annual report featuring Americans’ salaries from coast to coast. This year, PARADE looks back at American paychecks over the past 30 years, charting the ups, the downs, and the surprising turnarounds.

Among those featured in the issue is Ronald Sonnier, 62, who works as a Culinary instructor. Back in 1995, Sonnier, who was then 45-years-old, was featured in the What People Earn issue. Back then he was pulling in $31,500 as a Chef.

Today, Sonnier is earning more than double that amount at $70,000.

Along with changes in salary, participants were asked questions such as, are you happy at work? How did the recession affect you? Do you dream of finding a new job? The answers offer a revealing look at how our varied workforce has fared in these uncertain times.

And what would this all be without a look at back at the early earnings for some celebrities as well.
Before he got his big break on 21 Jump Street, Johnny Depp, 48, earned $13,500 selling pens over the phone to make ends meet.

Ever imagine Don Draper serving sandwiches? Actor Jon Hamm, 41, spent much of the 1990s going on auditions and waiting tables (earning $14,350) to pay the rent. He now earns $2.3 million for his role on Mad Men.

Before she appeared on American Idol, Carrie Underwood worked as a waitress, earning $15,980. The country star now earns a whopping $20 million.

As a struggling actor in the 1980s, Steve Buscemi, 54, worked as New York City firefighter, earning $22,700; now he stars on Boardwalk Empire, bringing home $900,000.

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