Raleigh News & Observer/Getty Images
Rachaell Davis
Nov, 29, 2017

Respected civil rights advocate John Hope Franklin has received a long overdue honor just in time for the holidays.

A professor, author and researcher who passed away in 2009 at the age of 94, it was announced on Monday that a portion of Interstate 85 in North Carolina has been named "John H. Franklin Highway" in honor of Franklin's memory, according to US News.

Franklin's work directly impacted multiple groundbreaking moments in civil rights history, including the Brown vs. Board of Education case, while his Racial Equality In America lecture series remains in circulation across college campuses today. A revered educator who held positions at several notable HBCUs including North Carolina Central and Howard University, these accomplishments, paired with his published literary work From Slavery to Freedom, earned Franklin a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1995.

While officially announcing plans to dedicate of the highway back in January 2017, former U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx best described Franklin as "someone who helped people understand African-American history in the greater context of American society."