The CEO of a Minneapolis brewery who this past week found himself embroiled in a controversy over a noose incident two years ago has resigned with immediate effect.
Kale Johnson came under scrutiny after a post circulated on social media that claimed two years ago he waved a noose at a Black employee and allegedly said "come here boy."
In a widely criticized social media post, Johnson said he was reaching out to the former employee, saying what was being alleged was "unfathomable" to him and he wanted to "understand how my actions led to this."
He later posted an apology, claiming the incident stemmed from an evening where they were hanging out after work and he was "demonstrating sailor knots," and he put a bowline knot on the table.
Johnson said an employee said seeing the knot caused them discomfort and he apologized immediately.
But the pressure has continued, leading to Johnson's resignation.
"It has been a tremendous privilege to serve as the CEO of 56 Brewing since its inception," he wrote. "However, in the best interest of the company I am resigning as CEO effective immediately."
"I do not take this action lightly as I love 56 Brewing and I am so proud of what we’ve collectively created over the years," he added. "However, it is apparent that my continued presence at the company is creating a negative impact to the company that I love. I understand now that recent and past events have caused people that I care about hurt and pain and for that I am truly sorry.
"I hope the company will continue to grow and build a stronger culture of openness and acceptance. I love people with no exceptions and I stand against racism, discrimination, and violence."