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Dan Cathy: Chick-fil-A CEO regrets public anti-gay marriage remarks

Dan Cathy, the son of Chick-fil-A founder S. Truett Cathy, plays the National Anthem at the 2005 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Georgia on December 30, 2005. LSU defeated Miami 40-3.
(Photo by A. Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy has had some time to reflect and regrets the stigma that has been associated with his company after he spoke out against the Supreme Court’s rulings that recognized same-sex marriage. According to a report by Time Magazine on March 17, Cathy wants to put the controversy behind him and his company.

The CEO, formerly the COO of the company, admitted his regret in a recent interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. As his company will stand by its Christian values, Cathy feels his company had no place in the marriage debate. It is an experience he has learned from.

“Every leader goes through different phases of maturity, growth and development and it helps by (recognizing) the mistakes that you make. And you learn from those mistakes. If not, you’re just a fool. I’m thankful that I lived through it and I learned a lot from it.”

Cathy’s regret does not change his stance on gay marriage, an opinion he made public almost two years ago. As his personal views came to symbolize Chick-fil-A as a company against same-sex marriage, Cathy is trying to disassociate his company as being anti-gay. It is something he admits has been hard to do.

“The bottom line is we have a responsibility here to keep the whole of the organization in mind, and it has to take precedence over the personal expression and opinion on social issues.”

Dan Cathy has decided to step back from the same-sex marriage debate and focus on the present and future expansion of his company, which includes valuing his employees and customers equally. Some may call that a wise business choice.

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