By Manna Zel, she/they
This month in the world of Good News, Melody Ehsani was tapped to lead creative direction for Foot Locker’s women’s department, the EPA made climate change a priority again, and Los Angeles became a no-kill shelter city. Keep reading for the good details.
March 5: Foot Locker Taps Melody Ehsani to be the First Women’s Creative Director (Nylon)
After years of collaborating with streetwear brands and building her own jewelry and fashion line, Melody Ehsani was named the creative director of Foot Locker’s women’s department. “Growing up, Foot Locker stores were a staple of my cultural landscape. I am truly honored to become the first creative director for Foot Locker’s women’s business and for the opportunity to help shape and build upon the impact of their brand on a global scale. I look forward to bringing my set of experiences to the table—not just as a designer, but as a longtime customer,” Ehsani said in a statement.
March 10: Michael Regan Confirmed by Senate as First Black Man to Lead the Environmental Protection Agency (USA Today)
Michael Regan, President Joe Biden’s selection to head the Environmental Protection Agency, was confirmed with a vote of the Senate—making Regan the first Black man to be the EPA’s administrator and the second Black person, following Lisa Jackson under the Obama Administration.
March 12: Yale Scientists Successfully Repair Injured Spinal Cords Using Patients’ Own Stem Cells (Good News Network)
When Yale scientists used intravenous injections of bone marrow derived stem cells in patients with spinal cord injuries, it led to massive improvements in the patients’ motor functions. “The idea that we may be able to restore function after injury to the brain and spinal cord using the patient’s own stem cells has intrigued us for years,” said Stephen G. Waxman, one of the senior authors of the study. “Now we have a hint, in humans, that it may be possible.”
March 15: Oscars 2021: Chloe Zhao, Steven Yeun, Riz Ahmed, Viola Davis Nominations Break Barriers (Paste Magazine)
When the 2021 Oscar nominations dropped, multiple actors made history. Steven Yeun became the first Asian-American nominee for Best Actor, while Riz Ahmed was the first person of Pakistani descent to be nominated in the acting category and the first Muslim person nominated for Best Actor. For their performances in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Viola Davis became the most-nominated Black actress ever while the late Chadwick Boseman became the first non-white actor to receive a posthumous Oscar nomination.
March 17: Leyna Bloom makes history in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue (CNN Style)
American model and actress Leyna Bloom became the first Black and Asian trans woman in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue—and only the second trans woman to be featured in the swimsuit issue, which comes out in July. To CNN, Bloom said that being in the swimsuit issue “is an incredible feeling and achievement,” though “there’s still so much work to be done for more representation.”
March 19: The EPA’s Website Makes Climate Change a Priority Again (The Verge)
“Climate facts are back on EPA’s website where they should be,” wrote EPA Administrator Michael Regan in a press release when the climate change webpage was re-added to the Environmental Protection Agency website. The EPA has deemed climate change a priority of theirs and provided inclusive and accessible resources on how climate change impacts our lives.
March 20: Los Angeles Becomes the Largest US City with a ‘No-Kill’ Animal Shelter (CNN)
Los Angeles is now a no-kill shelter city—and the largest one in the country, at that. LA has a save rate of 90.4%—just above the 90% rate a city needs to be considered “no-kill”. “It’s difficult to overstate the enormity of this moment and its place in the history of the no-kill movement,” said Julie Castle, the chief executive officer of Best Friends Animal Society—which gives save ratings—in a statement. “[No-Kill Los Angeles] has demonstrated what’s possible when an entire community works together and if Los Angeles can do it, any city can.”