TODAY | August 24, 2013
>> is breathing a sigh of relief today. on friday, the racial discrimination and sexual harassment lawsuit against her was dismissed when they agreed to a settlement. the whole thing was a disaster for her career. can she bounce back? we take a look.
>> here we go.
>> reporter: the lawsuit brought by a former restaurant manager singed the queen of cooking. allegations of sexual harassment and racial discrimination . it left paula deen in the clear. she said i am pleased the judge dismissed the race claim and i am looking forward to getting this behind me now that the remaining claims have been resolved. now the question of what's next for deen. her $17 million empire unraveled after details of her deposition were released where she made racial slurs and denying the claims in the lawsuit.
>> i'm sure the attorneys and paula didn't understand how damaging it would become based on her depositions which were a disaster for paula deen .
>> she spoke in an interview on "today" and followed up with a series of taped apologies.
>> i beg for your forgiveness.
>> she did appear on "today" in an emotional interview.
>> i have never, with any intention hurt anybody on purpose. i never would.
>> reporter: her big name sponsors and endorsement deals melted away. brand experts say with her loyal following she's able to make a comeback.
>> at the end of the day , a loyal customer base, a loyal audience, the key thing to economic success, she can come back and be a strong brand again.
>> reporter: the former manager who filed the suit issued a statement saying she since learned her initial complaints never reached her boss adding the paula deen i have known for more than eight years is a woman of compassion and kindness and will never tolerate discrimination of racism of any kind toward anyone. for "today," michelle franzen , nbc news new york.