Colin Kaepernick has turned his civil rights work into a media gig.
The former NFL quarterback known for kneeling during the national anthem to protest police brutality and racial inequity, has joined blog site Medium to report and write on race.
Kaepernick, 32, will also join the board of the blogging Web site, established by Twitter co-founder Ev Williams. Other board members include Williams, and venture capital executives Biz Stone, Josh Elman and Ben Horowitz.
The athlete, who launched his own publishing company Kaepernick Publishing last year, will interview high-profile race leaders for Medium as well as write his own articles. His stories and stores he supports will be posted on Level, Medium’s publication for black and brown men, as well as Momentum, a new civil rights blog.
Currently, the only content on Kaepernick Publishing is a video on the homepage that outlines its mission to give voice to stories about race and civil rights.
“I am excited for Kaepernick Publishing to partner with Medium to continue to elevate black voices in the news and publishing industry,” said Kaepernick, in a statement. “I also look forward to creating new opportunities and avenues for black writers and creators with my new role as a board member.”
“Throughout history our stories have been manipulated, destroyed and erased,” Kaepernick said. “Our culture has been colonized, our genius exploited and our creativity co-opted. We’ve had to fight for our humanity, representation and control. Control of our narrative is crucial to decolonize knowledge, stories, culture and minds.”
He continued, “We must take control of narratives, the kind of control that will liberate us from seeing ourselves through the gaze of others. The kind of control that can change the way we see the world and how the world sees us.”
Kaepernick became a lightning rod figure when he began kneeling during the national anthem while a QB for the San Francisco 49ers in 2016, including criticisms from President Trump. He led the 49ers to the Super Bowl, but opted out of his contract after the 2016 season and has not played for any other team since. He has recently reached an out-of-court settlement with the NFL amid allegations that the league colluded to keep him from playing in the league with any other team. He also has a seven-figure sponsorship deal with Nike.
“We’ve been in talks with Colin for some time, and we are honored to be electing him to join our board,” said Williams, in a statement. “Collin’s voice and actions have led the discussion on racial justice, and the world is finally catching up to him.
“He’s an incisive, independent thinker, whose integrity as an activist and athlete has inspired so many. We’ve enjoyed collaborating with Colin so far, and look forward to tapping into his perspective, as a partner and leader.”