Former Rugby League star to receive honorary doctorate
Kick It Out ambassador Ikram Butt is to be awarded an honorary doctorate by Leeds Metropolitan University this Friday (July 22).
Ikram, a former professional Rugby League player with Leeds Rhinos and Huddersfield Giants, was the first British Asian player to represent England in any football code and is the founder of the British Asian Rugby Association (BARA), an organisation looking to increase community integration and to provide positive role models for youngsters.
He said: “I’m very honoured and overwhelmed to receive this award from such a prestigious university and its all the more so from the city I grew up.”
RFL Chief Executive, Nigel Wood, praised Ikram, who now manages the Connecting Communities Project for Leeds Rugby Foundation, for his achievement: “On behalf of the RFL I would like to congratulate Ikram on his honorary doctorate from Leeds Metropolitan University.
“He has been one of the sport’s true trailblazers and continues to work tirelessly to break down barriers and help grow the sport. We’re delighted that his hard work and valuable contributions to Rugby League and local communities has been recognised.”