Purdue University Drops Papa John’s Founder John Schnatter’s Name From Building
Papa John’s founder John Schnatter has been under fire in recent months after using racial slurs in a media-training conference call in May—and now his name is being dropped from a building at Purdue University.
Schnatter resigned from the company after using the N-word, and describing the lynching of black Americans in his home state of Indiana in graphic detail. His name is being removed from the Center for Economic Research building in West Lafayette, Ind., ABC News reported. The school also offered to return an $8 million dollar donation from Schnatter’s charity.
The university’s board of trustees explained its decision in a statement as a “necessary” move to “avoid distraction from the center’s work, counterproductive division on the campus, and any inference of any deviation from the university’s often stated stance on tolerance and racial relations.”
Schnatter’s name was removed from the website for the Center of Economic Research by Friday afternoon, the Lafayette Journal & Courier reported.
The multi-million dollar donation was going to be used as part of an $18 million effort to support new hires over the next six years, the Courier reported.
“We believe we can still be successful in attracting support for that purpose because the center has done, and will continue to do, excellent work,” said David Hummels, dean of the Krannert School of Management, according to the Courier. “But it might be on a longer timescale than we originally planned.”
Over in Muncie, Ind., Schnatter’s alma mater Ball State University said it would not drop the Papa John’s founder’s name from the building it named after him.
Rick Hall, Chairman of the Ball State University Board of Trustees said in a statement that the university would continue its support of the John H. Schnatter Institute because John “has never expressed racist views” in their experience, according to ABC News.
“Based on our current understanding of what transpired, John’s response to the current situation, and our experience with him, the Board will continue our support of the John H. Schnatter Institute for Entrepreneurship and Free Enterprise,” Hall said.
Schnatter gave Ball State $3.25 million in 2016 to create the Institute, according to the Courier.