Colin Kaepernick & Dave Chappelle To Receive W.E.B Du Bois Medal From Harvard University

Harvard University’s Hutchins Center for African & African American Studies announced the names of the eight recipients for this year’s W.E.B. Du Bois Medal, according to reports from the Associated Press. Named after the NAACP founder and first African American to earn a doctorate from Harvard, the W.E.B. Du Bois Medal honors individuals from around the globe in recognition of their contributions to “African American culture and the life of the mind.”

Athlete and activist Colin Kaepernick and activist and comedian Dave Chappelleare among the eight distinguished people who will receive the W.E.B. Du Bois Medal at the sixth annual Hutchins Center Honors, presented by the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research at Harvard University.

Harvard’s website describes Kaepernick as “an athlete and activist, is perhaps best known for protesting against racial injustice by taking a knee rather than standing during the playing of the national anthem when he was a quarterback with the San Francisco 49ers.” As for Dave Chappelle, Harvard makes sure to list all of his existing accolades, including, “several NAACP Image Awards, a BET Comedy Award (“Chappelle’s Show”), a 2018 Grammy Award for best comedy album, and two Prime Time Emmy Awards: outstanding guest actor in a comedy series (“Saturday Night Live”), and outstanding variety special (pre-recorded) for “Dave Chappelle: Equanimity.” Rolling Stone ranked him No. 9 in its list of 50 Best Stand-Up Comics of All Time, and he was called a “comic genius” by Esquire magazine.”

Other honorees for the night are Kenneth Chenault, chairman and a managing director of General Catalyst; Shirley Ann Jackson, president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; Pamela Joyner, founder of Avid Partners, LLC; psychologist and author Florence Ladd; Bryan Stevenson, founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative; and artist Kehinde Wiley, who painted the portrait of Barack Obama that hangs in the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.

The ceremony will be held October 11 at 4 p.m. in Sanders Theatre, Memorial Hall, 45 Quincy St., Cambridge.

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