The athlete-turned-civil-rights-activist will be joining the board at Medium, the blogging platform led by Twitter co-founder Ev Williams. In addition to the board seat, Kaepernick Publishing, which Kaepernick unveiled in February, will create stories for Medium about race and civil rights in the United States.
Kaepernick will be the only minority on Medium’s board, which comprises of four white men: Williams, Biz Stone, Josh Elman and Ben Horowitz.
Medium said in a statement on Thursday that Kaepernick will interview high profile leaders, activists and athletes and write stories based on those conversations. He also will write and support editorial features on Level, Medium’s publication for black and brown men, and Momentum, Medium’s new blog on anti-black racism 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,” Kaepernick said 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.”
Kaepernick said in February that he launched Kaepernick Publishing to create opportunities for “black and brown writers to control their narratives and retain ownership.” He also said at the time that he will publish his memoir through the newly-formed publishing house.
Kaepernick made headlines during the 2016 season when he opted to sit instead of stand for the National Anthem to raise awareness about police brutality. The sitting evolved into kneeling, which sparked controversy that turned him into a pariah in the NFL. Kaepernick has been a free agent since 2017.
This week, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell encouraged teams to sign Kaepernick, a call that followed weeks of national protests over the death of George Floyd and other black Americas at the hands of police. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that Kaepernick should play “if he has the playing ability,” even though he had originally called on team owners to fire football players who kneeled in solidarity with Kaepernick.
Medium, founded in 2012 by Williams, started as an open blogging platform but later expanded to its own publications. The platform is popular among famous figures including President Barack Obama who published a post about the recent protests.
A Medium spokesperson declined to comment on whether the board position is paid.
“We’ve been in talks with Colin for some time, and we are honored to be electing him to join our board,” Williams said in a statement. “Colin’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.”