Ali, 70, who suffers from Parkinson's disease, appeared on the front lawn of the National Constitution Center Thursday while his wife, Yolanda Ali, delivered an acceptance speech on behalf of the world champion boxer and Vietnam-era anti-war icon, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Friday.
"Muhammad has always believed that he lives within the great circle of humanity. He is, indeed, of the people," Yolanda Ali said. "His care, his concerns, his well wishes, are all focused on the people within that great circle -- we, the people."
The Liberty Medal, which was first awarded in 1989 and comes with a $100,000 prize, has previously been bestowed upon Sandra Day O'Connor, Colin Powell, Mikhail Gorbachev, Steven Spielberg, Bono, Nelson Mandela and Lech Walesa.