Colin Kaepernick receives prestigious W.E.B Du Bois honor from Harvard

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick was among the eight distinguished people honored by Harvard with the esteemed W.E.B. Du Bois Medal during the Hutchins Center Honors by the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research.

Kaepernick was honored for his work and contributions toward racial injustice and police brutality. He was honored along with eight others including Kenneth I. Chenault, chairman and a managing director of General Catalyst; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute President Shirley Ann Jackson; philanthropist and founder of Avid Partners, LLC, Pamela J. Joyner; psychologist and author Florence C. LaddBryan Stevenson, founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative; and artist Kehinde Wileywho so famously illustrated Presidential portrait of Barack Obama.

“Thank you, Harvard University, for honoring me tonight with the W.E.B. Du Bois Medal,” Kaepernick tweeted on Friday. “I’m grateful for this recognition and to be amongst the other highly esteemed honorees that inspire me.”

The Du Bois medalists are chosen because they’ve made significant contributions to African and African-American history and culture, according to the group’s website.

“In the year of the 150th anniversary of his birth, W.E.B. Du Bois would be proud of the eight individuals being recognized at this year’s Hutchins Center Honors,” said Henry Louis Gates Jr., who is the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and director of the Hutchins Center.