John Schnatter announcing gift to U of L College of Business earlier this year. | Photo by Stephen George

John Schnatter announcing a gift to U of L’s College of Business earlier this year. | Photo by Stephen George

Papa John’s International Inc. founder, chairman and CEO John Schnatter has relinquished one of his titles.

Steve Ritchie, the chief operating officer at Papa John’s, has been named company president in addition to his COO responsibilities, according to a news release.

Ritchie started with the company in 1996 as a customer service representative making $5 an hour and moved up the chain of command from there, the company said.

No word on what his new salary will be. However, last year, Ritchie earned about $1.47 million as COO and senior vice president, according to the company’s most recent proxy statement.

“We are fortunate to have a proven leader in Steve to assume the additional role of president,” Schnatter said in a news release. “He shares my passion for quality and is an outstanding operator and leader for our company and entire system.”

Schnatter took over as president last year, when former president Tony Thompson left for Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc.