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John Schnatter resigns as Papa John’s chairman

The founder of Papa John's has filed a lawsuit against the company, its board of directors and CEO in the latest twist in the drama surrounding the pizza chain.

The founder of Papa John's, John Schnatter, has filed a lawsuit against the company, its board of directors and CEO in the latest twist in the drama surrounding the pizza chain. | AP file photo

NEW YORK — 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.