BOSTON (AP) — Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has been recognized in Boston for advancing gay and transgender rights.

The nonprofit GLBTQ Legal Advocates and Defenders honored Holder Friday evening with its 18th annual Spirit of Justice award.

GLAD organizers say Holder was selected "for his visionary leadership to advance civil rights and LGBTQ justice." The group says it's also recognizing him for his work on voting rights, criminal justice reform and examining racial bias in policing.

Holder was attorney general under President Barack Obama from 2009 to 2015.

GLAD executive director Janson Wu says Holder has made the country "a better, more just place."

Previous recipients include ex-Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, Harvard Law School professor and former Justice Department official Laurence Tribe and LGBT activists Urvashi Vaid and Mandy Carter.