Paula Deen, 66, has passed on the opportunity to compete on Dancing With the Stars, according to the August 19 issue of Us Weekly.
Since the embattled celebrity chef admitted to using the N-word at her Savannah, Georgia-based restaurant during a videotaped deposition, she has lost her contract with the Food Network, in addition to multiple endorsement deals.
"The dance floor is not the appropriate forum for her," a Deen source told US Weekly.
Donald Trump has argued Deen could redeem her image with appearances on reality TV, like Dancing With the Stars or Celebrity Apprentice.
“Celebrity Apprentice has proven to be a great format for reinventing and re-establishing careers i.e.: Brett Michaels, Arsenio Hall, Trace Atkins, Joan Rivers, and many others. Paula Deen’s reputation has taken a big hit and what better way to make a comeback than by raising money for charity?”
Dancing With the Stars co-host Tom Bergeron, also sees participating in a reality TV show as an opportunity for Deen to repair her image and regain fans. “We've seen career resurgences after the show,” Bergeron told Us. “People go, 'I remember why I love that person!’”
Professional dancer Cheryl Burke agrees the publicity would work in Deen’s favor. “Right now, lots of controversial things are happening around her and her situation, and I think coming on something light and fun would be good for her.”