Papa John’s founder, John Schnatter, has resigned as chairman of the company’s board after apologizing for saying the n-word during a sensitivity call in May. The news came shortly after the Major League Baseball had indefinitely suspended its Papa Slam promotion, which had been ongoing since 2016.
Papa John’s founder, John Schnatter, is apologizing after he used the n-word during a sensitivity training call in May. The call was made to help Schnatter avoid public relations snafus about race after he complained that NFL players protesting the anthem were the reason for his slump in sales.
Schnatter allegedly said, “Colonel Sanders called blacks ‘n***ers’” and didn’t face public backlash, in the call. He also recalled how African-Americans were killed by being dragged from trucks in his Indiana hometown growing up. His comments obviously offended people on the call, leading the company to respond with a statement that said they “condemn racism and any insensitive language, no matter the situation or setting. Our company was built on a foundation of mutual respect and acceptance.”
Schnatter also released a statement to Daily News, which read, “News reports attributing the use of inappropriate and hurtful language to me during a media training session regarding race are true. Regardless of the context, I apologize. Simply stated, racism has no place in our society.”
News hit the company hard as stocks fell 5%, leading to a $96 million market value loss. Schnatter also submitted his resignation to the University of Louisville’s board of trustees following the news.