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New York City Just Appointed Its First-Ever Rat Czar—And Her Salary Is Staggering

Former elementary teacher Kathleen Corradi steps into the newly created role of Citywide Director of Rodent Mitigation for New York City with a salary of $155,000 per year.

A rat; Kathleen Corradi
@time/TikTok; @nytimes/TikTok

Imagine having a rat problem so bad you need to hire a Rat Czar.

Then imagine the job of Rat Czar is so important it pays $155,000 per year.

Rats aren't exactly the "huddled masses" poet Emma Lazarus was referencing when she wrote the poem engraved at the Statue of Liberty, but it seems to be the huddled mass the city has ended up with.

And Mayor Eric Adams has had enough.

After announcing he would appoint a "Rat Czar" to the city's government back in 2022—and the city's sanitation commissioner Jessica Tisch infamously announced "the rats don't run this city, we do"—Adams filled the spot at last.

At an event last week, Adams welcomed former elementary school teacher Kathleen Corradi as New York's first-ever Citywide Director of Rodent Mitigation—as seen below.


Kathleen Corradi, New York City’s first rat czar, will oversee efforts to drive down the rat population.

In her speech, Corradi vowed to rid New York City of its most infamous denizens.

She told those in attendance:

"As the first director of rodent mitigation, I'm excited to bring a science and systems-based approach to fight rats."
"New York may be famous for the Pizza Rat, but rats, and the conditions that help them thrive, will no longer be tolerated – no more dirty curbs, unmanaged spaces or brazen burrowing."
"I'm honored to lead this work, grateful to Mayor Adams for this opportunity, and look forward to sending the rats packing."

For that work, Corradi will be handsomely rewarded with that $155,000 salary.

Although that's not nearly as lush a payday in New York City as it would be in pretty much any other part of the country. It's an amount Mayor Adams thinks is "not enough" given the scope of the job.

On social media, many disagreed and thought $155,000 sounded pretty good.

And of course, given the slight absurdity of the whole situation, there were lots of rat-related jokes.

Corradi is part of Mayor Adams' billion-dollar initiative toward rat abatement in the city.

Much of the effort is focused on Harlem, where the city will send 19 full-time staff and 14 seasonal staff to clean and maintain public spaces, perform inspections and exterminate rats where needed.

We offer Corradi our heartfelt congRATulations on her new position.