Cookie Lommel | Los Angeles, CA - Operation Unity
Youth Playing Basketball

Cookie Lommel

Author/Speaker Founder/President Operation Unity

Lommel founded Operation Unity in 1992, inspired by Israel’s 1991 airlift of Ethiopian Jews. She saw the airlift as a humanitarian move that spoke to the possibilities of people coming together. She saw it as a reflection of the values embodied in an Israeli kibbutz, a village where cooperative labor provides for all the needs of the participants.

Cookie Lommel Receiving Award
Youth Playing Basketball
Cookie Lommel Receiving Award
The outgrowth of that inspiration was the founding of Operation Unity to involve American inner-city students, young Ambassadors of Harmony, in the cooperative living environment of a kibbutz. The goal was to break down racial, ethnic and cultural barriers and promote an appreciation for what even people from diverse cultures can achieve by working together. Dozens of students from the Los Angeles Unified School District have successfully participated in the program as Young Ambassadors of Harmony.

Bringing people together is a central focus of Lommel’s vision. In 1998, she collaborated with LAUSD teachers in writing and editing a high school curriculum, Life Skills for the 21st Century and Teacher’s Manual, Focus on the Multicultural Classroom for the Los Angeles Unified School District

As a journalist, Lommel has served as entertainment editor for Teen Magazine; music editor for Cash Box Magazine; associate editor for Radio & Records Magazine; and editor-at-large for Black Elegance Magazine. She has interviewed hundreds of film, television and music personalities as an on-camera reporter for CNN.

Lommel has also written seven biographies for young adults, exploring the lives and contributions of Madame C. J. Walker, Robert Church, Johnnie L. Cochran, James Oglethorpe, Mary Church Terrell, Beck and Arthur Miller. Additionally, she has written The History of Rap Music, African American Actors, and Black Filmmakers.

Lommel’s community outreach efforts have earned her several awards: including a Community Service Award from The National Conference; a Certificate of Recognition from the County of Los Angeles; a Certificate of Commendation from the City of Los Angeles, a Mayor’s Commendation from the City of Santa Monica; and an Official Honor from the State of Israel.

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