NEW YORK, Aug. 7 (Xinhua) -- Purdue University in the United States has recently dropped the name of pizza chain Papa John's founder from a building at the school and offered to return the multi-million dollar funds associated with the naming, according to a statement.
"The Purdue Board of Trustees has decided that the name ... should revert to the Purdue University Research Center in Economics," the school said, referring to the building which was previously named after Papa John's founder John Schnatter.
Schnatter's family foundation donated eight million U.S. dollars to the public research university in April 2018, "to fund economics research," according to a statement the school released this April.
The university's board of trustees explained that the action "is necessary 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."
The explanation was alluding to the racially charged comments Schnatter once made. The founder of Papa John's used the N-word on a conference call in May and also made comments about racial relations when he reflected on his early life in the state of Indiana, according to a July 11 report in Forbes magazine.
Schnatter later confirmed the allegations and resigned from the U.S. restaurant franchise company.
Schnatter founded Papa John's restaurant in 1984. It runs the third-largest take-out and pizza delivery restaurant chain in the United States, according to PMQ Pizza Magazine.