The Marcus Jewish Community Center was was hit with a bomb threat in the early morning hours of Wednesday, March 15, the second at the Dunwoody center since the start of 2017.

According to Cathal Lucy, the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta’s director of communitywide security, the threat came via email and was sent to several people, including JCC CEO Jared Powers.

The emailed threat was discovered in the morning and contained similar language to threats that have been received elsewhere. There was nothing unique to the Marcus JCC.

In an email letter sent to JCC members March 15, Powers said that all security protocols were followed and that the campus was searched thoroughly by the JCC security team and by local law enforcement before being declared clear.

“We must not let this threat deter us from the responsibility we have to be the safe, welcoming, inclusive, and diverse communal town square for the 55,000 people who walk through our doors each year,” Powers said in the email.

Marcus JCC CEO Jared Powers

The threat to the JCC is part of a rise in anti-Semitism the past few months, including threats to more than 150 JCCs and other Jewish organizations in 33 states and the vandalism of Jewish cemeteries in St. Louis and Philadelphia.

On March 7 and 8, the Anti-Defamation League’s Southeast office in Buckhead was among four ADL offices and at least 17 other Jewish institutions to receive bomb threats by phone or email.

In response to the rise in threats, the JCC Association of North America, ADL and other Jewish organizations met with FBI Director James Comey on March 3 and sent a letter March 8 to Attorney General Jeff Sessions that expressed frustration at the lack of progress in stopping the hoax calls.

The threat to the JCC in Dunwoody comes just a few days before the annual convention of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, scheduled for March 19 to 22 at the Loews Atlanta Hotel in Midtown. The theme of this year’s conference is “Being a Rabbi in Turbulent Times.”


Read: Marcus JCC CEO Jared Powers’ letter to members