Harvard University professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. has died, the university announced Thursday.
Gates, who served as director of Harvard’s Social Work Program for the past 25 years, was 88.
Gates was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis in July of last year and died at home on Thursday, a university spokesman said.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Ann.
The university said he was preceded by his daughters and his son, Henry Louis Jr. He received his doctorate in social work in 1959 from Harvard.
Gates became a professor at the University of California at Berkeley in 1972.
He retired in 1984 and is survived by his children, his grandchildren and many grandchildren.
The University of Southern California has announced Gates’ death.
“Henry was a remarkable and talented teacher and scholar, and his students were among the best in the country,” the university said in a statement.
“His life and teaching will be forever remembered.”
Gates worked as a social worker for many years, including at the Berkeley campus.
He also taught psychology at the California State University, Fullerton.
The family said he died peacefully at his home in San Francisco.
Harvard University is a private, liberal arts university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.