Papa John's founder exiting as CEO weeks after National Football League comments

John Schnatter

"We couldn't have a more proven leader to guide Papa John's through its next stage of growth".

Papa John's apologized two weeks later, after white supremacists praised Schnatter's comments.

He made comments to investors that "NFL leadership has hurt Papa John's shareholders" and that the protests "should have been nipped in the bud a year and a half ago", referring to Colin Kaepernick, 29, who started the movement while playing for the San Francisco 49ers.

While the pizza chain's future was temporarily tossed in the air, it seems to have landed in loyal hands.

Papa John's later apologized for being "divisive" in its criticism of the NFL.

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Lance Naik Gurmail Singh, 34, belonged to District Amritsar in Punjab and is survived by his wife kuljit Kaur and a daughter. Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full.

A news release from the company announced Ritchie's promotion, effective January 1.

In explaining the disappointing results, Schnatter pointed a finger at NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, arguing that the national-anthem controversy was hurting ratings - and, in turn, sales of his pizza. Goodell has since signed a contract extension worth $200 million.

Despite his overall fortune, Schnatter's annual salary is comparatively modest, just over $3.5 million, according to the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. The 43-year-old, who began as a Papa John's customer-service rep making $6 an hour in 1996, has been chief operating officer for the past three years. "The board gets upset because I won't take a raise, but I've got plenty of money".

Papa John's is an National Football League sponsor, and on a shareholders call in early November Schnatter said, "NFL leadership has hurt Papa John's shareholders" by "not resolving the current debacle to the players' and owners' satisfaction".

Papa John's issued an apology after the November 1 conference call distancing itself from Schnatter's comments. The company now operates more than 5,000 locations.

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As of Friday, the company's stock traded at $56.88.

Richie, who opened up his own Papa John's franchise in 2006, has been COO since 2014.

John Schnatter's primary residence is a mansion fit for a pizza king.

As for Schnatter, a Jeffersonville-native, he will stay on as Chairman of the company's board of directors.

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