Awards, a Kentucky first and more in this week's News is Good. Photo: kieferpics/Canva

Welcome to our weekly column, News is Good, where we feature positive news about the LGBTQ+ community. Too much of what we see in mainstream media coverage focuses on the challenges we face and not the celebrations. Here are five things we’re excited about this week.

Rebecca Blankenship makes history as Kentucky’s first out transgender elected official. Blankenship was sworn in this week after winning a write-in candidacy for Berea Independent School District board in November. A long-time LGBTQ+ activist and advocate, Blankenship is the executive director of Ban Conversion Therapy Kentucky and mom to four children in the district.

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“Last of Us” series debuts on HBO Max. Based on the popular video game, gruff, grieving father Joel (Pedro Pascal) must escort teenage Ellie (Bella Ramsey) across a post-apocalyptic U.S. in order to possibly save the world from a deadly and dangerous virus. Ellie is a lesbian in the game and it appears that the first season will touch on her relationship with first love, Riley. “Last of Us” premieres this Sunday.

Outfest receives $20,000 grant from NEA. The National Endowment for the Arts has granted Outfest funding towards their Outfest Fusion QTBIPOC Film Festival, a 10-day festival celebrating the work of LGBTQIA+ creators of color. You can catch Outfest Fusion Mar. 24-April 2 in various locations throughout Los Angeles.

FLETCHER and Kelsea Ballerini team up. Queer pop star FLETCHER, hot off her guest spot on “L Word: Generation Q,” recently released a version of her song “better version (of me)” with country star and ally Ballerini. The video features FLETCHER and Ballerini with their respective love interests.

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Ryan Murphy receives Carol Burnett TV Achievement Award at the Golden Globes. Writer, director, producer Murphy is the force behind some of television’s most impactful LGBTQ+ stories including “Pose” “Glee” and “American Horror Story.” He was acknowledged for his impact on the television landscape by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association this week at the Golden Globes. Murphy began his speech by asking “Pose” actress MJ Rodriguez (last year’s Golden Globe winner for “Best Actress in a Drama TV Series”) to stand and receive the ovation she missed when last year’s awards were not televised.

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