When Steve Ritchie became CEO of Papa John’s in January 2018, one of his top priorities was to make diversity, equity, and inclusion at Papa John’s the company’s cardinal value. Accordingly, members of Papa John’s management team recently received “unconscious bias training” and Steve Ritchie said that the training program will be implemented nationally soon. Currently, an independent audit into Papa John’s culture, diversity and inclusion practices is underway, followed by necessary actionable recommendations. Relatively recently, CEO Steve Ritchie and some of the most senior members of Papa John’s management team completed a listening tour, in which they made visits to Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas, and Detroit for the purpose of acquiring feedback from some of their franchisees and team members on how the pizza chain can better serve its customers and improve overall as a diverse, equitable, and inclusive company.

CEO Steve Ritchie also announced that plans are underway to assemble a very special advisory group comprised of some of the country’s most respected experts on how a company can best incorporate the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion into their company. In addition, Steve Ritchie said that Papa John’s will be implementing two long-term initiatives that are consistent with the company’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. The company will create a franchise expansion and development program specifically for minorities and women to provide women and minorities with a greater opportunity to obtain a Papa John’s franchise. The pizza chain will also establish a new foundation to effectuate a positive impact in the communities where their employees reside and work. The new foundation will furnish support to organizations whose existential purpose is to eradicate the biases that tend to divide us and to support and celebrate those that tend to bring people together. The company also has created a new position, Chief of Diversity and Inclusion, which will be held by Victoria Russell.

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