About MacDella Cooper

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The Cooper Commitment is founded on the moral imperative to address the desperate state of social services in Liberia – countrywide – which remain far below pre-war levels. More than 1/3 of the population – and an even higher proportion of the country’s children – lives on less than $1 a day.

A PRAGMATIST, PHILANTHROPIST & LEADER

MacDella “Mackie” Cooper – also known to many as “Liberia’s Angel”– was born in Monrovia, Liberia.
Cooper’s life was deeply affected by the Liberian Civil War in 1990s. As a teen, she lived in exile as a refugee in Côte d’Ivoire as thousands who fled the conflict that killed more than 200,000 people and displaced hundreds of thousands more. In 1993, she and her two older brothers (Harry and Valentine) migrated to the United States to reunite with their mother in Newark, New Jersey. At Barringer High School, Cooper ranked third in a class of 1,200 students. She was subsequently awarded a full scholarship to the College of New Jersey in Ewing where she earned a degree in Communications.

A mother of three committed to contributing to a better world, Cooper divides her time between the United States, Liberia and other countries.

Experience & Commitment

With the backdrop of two brutal civil Liberian wars that killed scores of peoples and displaced at least a million up to 2003, Cooper relinquished in 2004 a whirlwind, jet-setting career in modeling, fashion and event planning. She was moved by the passion and determination to contribute to the welfare of the children of her motherland. To this end, she founded in 2004 the MacDella Cooper Foundation (MCF), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charity dedicated to breaking the cycle of poverty by providing orphaned and abandoned children with an education, safe and basic necessities of life, i.e., food, shelter, clothing and access to healthcare. macdellacooper.org

In 2010, Cooper launched the MCF Academy, a boarding school for orphans in Charlesville, Margibi County, Liberia. Housing some 200 students on a secure campus, the Academy is Liberia’s first tuition-free boarding school. Its mission is to provide an improved quality of education and life prospects for orphaned and abandoned children in a safe environment that is also conducive to learning. Cooper’s dream is for the Academy – and the MCF Agency for Youth Development (which she also founded) – will foster future leaders who take pride in themselves and their country.

In addition to her work as MCF Founder, President and CEO, Cooper is a charismatic inspirational speaker. By sharing her story of fighting adversity, nurturing healing, fostering transformation and service, Cooper’s well-received public engagements have captivated diverse audiences, leading them to shift their priorities toward philanthropic impact.

Kids get clean drinking water and three meals a day consisting of healthy, locally-grown foods. It’s a place where children have their own beds, and access to healthcare and a quality education. It’s a place where they’re happy, and where they learn kindness and how to make wise decisions for their lives.”

MacDella Cooper

I took a wide look at the problems in Africa. I realized that empowering women to take care of themselves and their children is paramount. By providing more opportunities to women, they will be given the means to see themselves and act as leaders…not followers, or helpless bystanders. It’s all about teaching women and adolescent girls to engage in their communities more positively, and more powerfully.

MacDella Cooper

AFFILIATIONS & AWARDS

MacDella Cooper holds several leadership, advisory and board positions in the United States and Liberia, including representation with humanitarian organizations:

  • African & American Women for Peace (AAW-Peace)
  • American International School of Monrovia
  • American Red Cross Tiffany Circle
  • Liberian Community Association of New York
  • Segal Family Foundation

Cooper has also received a number of awards, including:

  • Global Ambassador for IMPACT Leadership 21 (2015)
  • Humanitarian Service Award, Coalition of West African Countries affected by Ebola (COWACAE) (2015)
  • Philanthropist of the Year Award, Young, Gifted & Black Entrepreneurial Awards (2015)
  • Trokon Clay Humanitarian Award (2015)
  • American Red Cross George W. Cutting Humanitarian Award (2012)
  • Applause Africa Award (2011)
  • Archbishop of Michael K. Francis Achievement Award (2011)
  • Spirit of Friskies Award (2011)
  • College of New Jersey Humanitarian Award (2010)
  • Momentum Women’s Award (2007)
  • Victor E. Ward Community Service Award (2007)