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Papa John’s founder resigns as chairman of the board after acknowledging use of racial slur

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NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 31: John H. Schnatter, Founder, Chairman & CEO of Papa John's International, Inc. rings the NASDAQ Opening Bell at NASDAQ MarketSite on January 31, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Rob Kim/Getty Images)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Papa John’s says founder John Schnatter has resigned as chairman of the board. The company made the announcement late Wednesday, hours after Schnatter apologized for using a racial slur during a conference call in May.

The apology comes after Forbes cited an anonymous source saying the pizza chain’s marketing firm broke ties with the company afterward. Forbes said Schnatter used the N-word during a media training exercise. When asked how he would distance himself from racist groups, Schnatter reportedly complained that Colonel Sanders never faced a backlash for using the word.

In a statement released by Louisville, Kentucky-based Papa John’s, Schnatter said reports attributing use of “inappropriate and hurtful” language to him were true.

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