National Action Network founder and President Rev. Al Sharpton was recently awarded The Mandela Legacy’s “Hope, Success & Empowerment Award” at the Canadian Museum of History in Ottawa, Canada.

The award was given to Sharpton by Mandela’s family in recognition of his achievements in advancing civil rights causes. Sharpton and Nelson Mandela met many times and worked alongside each other.

Mandela’s daughters, Ambassador of South Africa in Denmark Zindzi Mandela and Ambassador of South Africa in Argentina Zenani Mandela-Dlamini, presented the award. Also presenting the award was Mandela’s grandson, Zondwa Mandela. The ceremony was attended by a range of dignitaries, representatives of the Canadian government, members of the diplomatic corps and other recipients.

“Nelson Mandela is an icon who changed the course of the world and set an example for generations of activists like myself. Mandela inspired us to be better in every way, to transcend the pettiness that so often dominates our politics and to aspire to true equality. To receive this award—in his name and from his family—is one of the highest honors I’ve received,” said Sharpton.