Miles College, a historically Black educational institution in Fairfield, Alabama, is partnering with Shaquille O’Neal, a four-time world champion in the National Basketball Association in a new venture. The initiative hopes to open a Papa John’s Pizza franchise at Miles College and eventually on the campus of every HBCU in the nation.
In making the announcement, Dr. O’Neal stated that “Martin Luther King, Jr. said, ‘If you want to move people, it has to be toward a vision that’s positive for them, that taps important values, that gets them something they desire and it has to be presented in a compelling way, so that they feel inspired to follow.’ Today, I ask you to catch the same vision that the noble founders of HBCUs held in carving out a venue to education, independence, and success. Join me and President Bobbie Knight of the great Miles College, as we move toward a business initiative that will open avenues of opportunities for our HBCUs.”
Dr. O’Neal has had a successful career in fast food. He owns a Krispy Kreme Doughnuts franchise in Atlanta and operated 27 outlets of Five Guys Burgers and Fries. He joined the board of director of Papa John’s earlier this year.
Dr. O’Neal is a graduate of Louisiana State University. He earned an MBA through the University of Phoenix and a doctorate in human resources development from Barry University in Miami.