November 23, 1961 |
Jeffersonville, Indiana, U.S.
|Residence||Anchorage, Kentucky, U.S.|
|Alma mater||Ball State University|
|Occupation||Founder, owner, CEO, and spokesman of Papa John's Pizza|
|Spouse(s)||Annette (m. 1987)|
|Children||Kristine (b. 1986)
Danielle (b. 1990)
Beau (b. 1996)
John H. Schnatter (born November 23, 1961), is an American businessman and the founder and current CEO of Papa John's International, Inc. He founded the company in October 1984. He is also the spokesman for Papa John's.
Early life and education
Schnatter was born in Jeffersonville, Indiana on November 23, 1961, and graduated from Jeffersonville High School in 1979, then earned a business degree from Ball State University in 1983. In 1984, John Schnatter's father co-owned Mick's Lounge, a tavern in Jeffersonville, Indiana. John sold his 1972 Camaro Z28, purchased used pizza equipment for $1,600, and removed a broom closet in the rear of the business from which he sold pizzas. The pizzas were so popular that Schnatter was able to move into his own space next door the following year.
His business has the naming rights to Papa John's Cardinal Stadium used by the University of Louisville's football team, in exchange for donating $5 million. Schnatter made a further donation for the stadium's expansion, and extended the naming rights to the year 2040.
On May 28, 2009 Schnatter was announced as Honorary Chair of the Ride to Conquer Cancer benefiting Louisville's Norton Cancer Institute.
In 1983, Schnatter sold his 1971 Chevrolet Camaro to help his father's struggling business. He used the left over funds to start Papa John's. Decades later, he offered a reward of $250,000 for finding the car, and on August 26, 2009, Schnatter bought the Camaro back for $250,000. In celebration, Papa John's offered a free pizza to anyone who owned a Camaro. The actual Camaro is on display in the company's headquarters in Louisville, Kentucky. The company owns several replicas that are used on tours and for public and TV appearances.
Schnatter had hosted a fundraiser at his home for Republican Party candidate Mitt Romney in May 2012. Schnatter was amongst other wealthy contributors on a 2014 list of people affiliated with the Koch brothers and the political fundraising organizations, as reported by Mother Jones.
Awards and honors
- Inducted into the Junior Achievement U.S. Business Hall of Fame in 2007.
- Named one of the Ten Outstanding Young Americans in 2000 by the National Jaycees Organization.
- Named 1998 National Ernst & Young Retail/Consumer Entrepreneur of The Year.
- Inducted into the Kentucky Entrepreneur Hall of Fame in 2010
- 2012 became an honorary initiate of Alpha Tau Omega
Schnatter has been married to his wife, Annette, since 1987. The couple have three children: Kristine (b. 1987), Danielle (b. 1990), and Beau (b. 1999). The Schnatter family resides in Anchorage, Kentucky.
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- "Conquer Cancer website". Conquercancer.ca. 2009-05-28. Retrieved 2010-07-30.
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- Gerth, Joseph (2012-04-17). "Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney to visit Louisville Thursday for fundraiser". The Courier-Journal. Retrieved 2014-02-04.
- Kroll, Andy; Schulman, Daniel (Feb 5, 2014). "The Koch Brothers Left a Confidential Document at Their Last Donor Conference—Read It Here". Retrieved February 5, 2014.
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- "About John Schnatter".