That Good Good | Majora Carter

Welcome to That Good Good, a series highlighting POC/LGBTQIA individuals doing great work to educate communities and protect the environment! Researched and written by Environmental Sciences undergraduate Haley Storm.

Meet Majora Carter, a badass woman doing nothing but good for urban communities. Majora has been at the forefront of environmental policy reform in the South Bronx, helping to lead the Bronx Environmental Stewardship Training (BEST). This training is intended to help provide members of the community with the knowledge and ability to better their own lives and the world. Her desire to help the environment stemmed from her upbringing in Hunts Point during a highway expansion program.

In her youth, she watched 600,000 members of her community lose their homes to the highways and insurance-driven arsen. She was aware and open about the inequality amongst the poor “ghetto” Hunts Point residents in comparison to those in Westchester and Manhattan, but was unwilling to let the socio-economic state of the city incite a lack of deservance. Majora was then granted 20 million dollars to create a Greenway connecting the South Bronx to Randall’s State Park over 25 feet of water. BEST had also provided an alternate transportation plan to remove the highways previously built and replace them with parkland and affordable housing.

Presently, offices have cooling gardens on the roofs of their new buildings, and more community members are participating in environmentally sound activities than ever before. Majora credits much of her determination to former Bogota Mayor Enrique Peñalosa, who proved urban planning did not only mean busy streets and skyscrapers, but also public plazas, and green walkways as well.

Her efforts have not come close to ending as she is now a recognized real estate developer, urban revitalization consultant, and Peabody Award winning broadcaster. It is no secret that Majora's impact has a global affect and her passion for new ideas provide inspiration to those witnessing similar changes in their urban communities.

 Watch Majora's 2006 TED talk and check out more of her work here!

- Haley Storm Evans / @haley.storm

Zoe Rayn Evans