The original 'Silence Breaker' who didn't make that cover plus more kick-ass black women.

This is the sixth edition of "This week in black women," a weekly column dedicated to signal-boosting the black women who make the world spin.

This week, I'm cheering for Atlanta's mayor-elect, Tarana Burke, and two books sure to land on your wishlist. Support these women! Pay these women! Follow them! Encourage them! Let's do this.

"We see you": Tarana Burke

In 2006, activist Tarana Burke founded the Me Too movement as a way to help survivors of sexual assault and violence. More than a decade later, Burke's work became part of a pivotal national conversation about survivors and sexual predators, particularly in the workplace. For her work, Burke was recognized as part of Time magazine's collective person of the year, along with other "Silence Breakers" of the #MeToo movement.


But, to the consternation of many of her devoted fans, she was left off the widely celebrated cover. So we're here to shout you out and praise your excellent work, Ms. Burke.

"This is just the start. I’ve been saying from the beginning it’s not just a moment, it’s a movement," Burke said in an interview with Time. "Now the work really begins."

Photo by Chirag Wakaskar/Pacific Press/Sipa USA via AP Images.

"Taking care of business": Keisha Lance Bottoms

In a narrow victory, Keisha Lance Bottoms was elected the mayor of Atlanta. There is something so encouraging and affirming about a black woman named Keisha running one of the largest cities in the country. It's a beautiful name, steeped in black girl magic, which in many circles may have drawn ire or limited her opportunities. But instead, Keisha Lance Bottoms was elected by the people to lead her city. What a time to be alive.

Keisha Lance Bottoms. Image via Vote ATL.

"Go off, sis": Amber Ruffin

Ruffin is a writer and performer for "Late Night With Seth Meyers" and uses her improv chops to help create some of the show's best moments. This week, Ruffin announced she will be hosting the 70th Writers Guild of Awards ceremony next February.  

Ruffin said in her statement, "If you’re looking for hard-hitting satire on sexual assault allegations, Russia and the Republican tax plan — too bad! This is gonna be all hugs and rainbows! (The hugs will be consensual.)"

Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Lindt.

If you're dreaming of a black Christmas...

It's the season of giving, and this week, I discovered two awesome books that would make great gifts for the kiddos in your life.

The first is the "Black Queens" coloring book. It's got affirmations, encouraging quotations, and of course, ample room to color and draw.

The second is "Little Leaders: Bold Women In Black History." With darling illustrations and short, easy to read biographies, the book is perfect for children and the young at heart.

Final thoughts: Aisha Alexander

This country has a long way to go, but some days, it feels good to reflect on how far we've come.

​Note: We were not paid by the authors to promote the books included in this post (we would tell you!). We just think it's just awesome to see black women lifting up and celebrating other black women.

Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels
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Increasingly customers are looking for more conscious shopping options. According to a Nielsen survey in 2018, nearly half (48%) of U.S. consumers say they would definitely or probably change their consumption habits to reduce their impact on the environment.

But while many consumers are interested in spending their money on products that are more sustainable, few actually follow through. An article in the 2019 issue of Harvard Business Review revealed that 65% of consumers said they want to buy purpose-driven brands that advocate sustainability, but only about 26% actually do so. It's unclear where this intention gap comes from, but thankfully it's getting more convenient to shop sustainably from many of the retailers you already support.

Amazon recently introduced Climate Pledge Friendly, "a new program to help make it easy for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products." When you're browsing Amazon, a Climate Pledge Friendly label will appear on more than 45,000 products to signify they have one or more different sustainability certifications which "help preserve the natural world, reducing the carbon footprint of shipments to customers," according to the online retailer.

Amazon

In order to distinguish more sustainable products, the program partnered with a wide range of external certifications, including governmental agencies, non-profits, and independent laboratories, all of which have a focus on preserving the natural world.

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Of the millions of Americans breathing a sigh of relief with the ushering in of a new president, one man has a particularly personal and professional reason to exhale.

Dr. Anthony Fauci has spent a good portion of his long, respected career preparing for a pandemic, and unfortunately, the worst one in 100 years hit under the worst possible administration. As part of Trump's Coronavirus Task Force, Dr. Fauci did what he could to advise the president and share information with the public, but it's been clear for months that the job was made infinitely more difficult than it should have been by anti-science forces within the administration.

To his credit, Dr. Fauci remained politically neutral through it all this past year, totally in keeping with his consistently non-partisan, apolitical approach to his job. Even when the president badmouthed him, blocked him from testifying before the House, and kept him away from press briefings, Fauci took the high road, always keeping his commentary focused on the virus and refusing to step into the political fray.

But that doesn't mean working under those conditions wasn't occasionally insulting, frequently embarrassing, and endlessly frustrating.

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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.