Papa John’s accuses founder of hurting company in attempt to regain control
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Papa John's on Wednesday ripped its founder, John Schnatter, accusing him of harming the company by putting his self-interest first "in an attempt to regain control" of the company.

“John Schnatter has demonstrated a continued pattern of ignoring decisions of the Board, both in his role as CEO and as non-executive Chairman of the Board,” an independent committee of the company's board of directors wrote in a statement released Wednesday.

Schnatter was ousted as the company's chairman in July after reports that he used a racial slur during a conference call. 

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“Colonel Sanders called blacks n-----s,” Schnatter said on the call, referring to the founder of KFC, according to Forbes.  Schnatter said Sanders didn’t face backlash for his statements.

Schnatter at the time apologized for his statement. 

"News reports attributing the use of inappropriate and hurtful language to me during a media training session regarding race are true," he said. "Regardless of the context, I apologize. Simply stated, racism has no place in our society."

He later said he regretted resigning, writing in a letter to the Papa John's board of directors that "I will not allow either my good name or the good name of the company I founded and love to be unfairly tainted.”

The Wednesday statement from the independent directors pointed to a variety of examples of Schnatter harming the company, including allegedly meeting with Papa John’s management and staff behind the CEO's back, as well as allegedly creating separate commercials starring himself in defiance of the board's desire to change advertising strategies.

The statement also pointed to Schnatter’s comments on NFL players kneeling in protest during the national anthem.

“The Board specifically directed John Schnatter not to talk about the NFL controversy related to the National Anthem on the 2017 third quarter earnings call,” the statement read. “In direct defiance of these instructions, John Schnatter made unscripted comments about the NFL controversy.”

Schnatter said in November of last year that the company was “disappointed the NFL and its leadership did not resolve” the controversy, saying that the protests hurt Papa John’s sales, which was the official pizza of the NFL at the time.

A company spokesperson later apologized for the statements, saying it was not the company’s intention to be divisive.