Welcome back to Woman Crush Wednesday, our weekly roundup of badass women in the news. This week’s review comes alongside two green holidays, depending on what (or how) you like to celebrate: 4/20 and Earth Day. And we’ve got you covered on both fronts: From one tireless environmental activist who successfully protected her indigenous lands from a massive hydroelectric development, to another whose urban farm grows dank bud and luscious organic tomatoes (all while helping to reconnect African-Americans to the land), and plenty in between.
Here’s who we’ve been crushing on this week:
- Los Angeles Times reporter Diana Marcum, who just won a Pulitzer Prize for her powerful portrayal of how California’s ongoing mega-drought affects the farmers and residents of the state’s parched Central Valley. (Los Angeles Times)
- Berta Cáceres, a Honduran activist who won the 2015 Goldman Environmental Prize for her tireless organization against a hydroelectric dam on indigenous Lenca lands — which she succeeded blocking in spite of numerous death threats and attacks against her. We interviewed Cáceres in August, and when asked why her campaign was being met with so much hostility, she responded: “We are women reclaiming the sovereignty of our bodies, our political thoughts and beliefs, [and] our cultural and spiritual rights. Of course the aggression will be much greater.” (Goldman Environmental Prize)
- Dianne D. Glave, an African-American pastor exploring connections between black women’s hair, their health, and how both relate to the environment. (Grist)
- Yevgenia Chirikova, a top Russian environmentalist who has campaigned against an $8 billion highway that runs through a federally protected forest. Environmental activism in Russia is dangerous work — it’s not uncommon to hear of activists suffering brutal beatings or facing imprisonment for their efforts. As a result, Chirikova is now fleeing the country to continue her work away from the prying eyes of the Russian government. (U.S. News & World Report)
- Karissa Lewis, co-founder of Full Harvest Farms in Oakland, who believes pot — that’s right, pot — is the gateway drug to urban farming. Spark it up. (Grist)
Stay tuned for next week’s roundup!