Steve Ritchie, Papa John's
Steve Ritchie has been promoted to c.e.o. of Papa John's.

LOUISVILLE, KY. — Steve Ritchie, a longtime employee of Papa John’s International, Inc., has been promoted to chief executive officer, effective Jan. 1.

Mr. Ritchie began his career with Papa John’s in 1996 as a customer service representative. A decade later, in 2006, he became a Papa John’s franchise owner and operator, then in 2010 began serving in increasing capacities of leadership in operations until being promoted to chief operating officer in 2014. He was added to the succession plan for the company’s top job in 2015 when he was named president.

John Schnatter, Papa John's
John Schnatter, founder of Papa John’s

“I am so proud of Steve — he has excelled at every job he’s ever held at Papa John’s — from being an hourly customer service rep, to a delivery driver, store general manager, director of operations, franchisee and most recently president,” said John Schnatter, founder of Papa John’s. “With 120,000 Papa John’s corporate and franchise employees, Steve will put the spotlight on our pizza and the most important ingredient — our team members. We couldn’t have a more proven leader to guide Papa John’s through its next stage of growth.”

In his role of c.e.o., Mr. Ritchie will lead Papa John’s global development and facilitate the brand’s marketing, digital and customer experience evolution.

“I am humbled to take on this role,” Mr. Ritchie said. “By focusing on our team members, we will deliver the world class experiences our customers deserve. At Papa John’s, any opportunity is achievable if you dedicate yourself to putting your best foot forward every day. I’m certain our future company leaders are delivering pizzas in one of our 5,000 stores around the world right now.”