JEWISHcolorado is being honored with the prestigious 2020 Federal Bureau of Investigation Director’s Community Leadership Award. This award recognizes institutions that have demonstrated outstanding contributions to their local communities by assisting the FBI in combatting crime, terrorism, drugs, and violence in America.
JEWISHcolorado is one of 146 Jewish Federations in North America, with a mission to secure, steward, and share philanthropic resources to support communities in times of need. Their Regional Safety & Security Initiative represents an exemplary partnership between a local Jewish Federation, local agencies and funders, and the Secure Community Network (SCN), the official safety and security organization of the Jewish community in North America. JEWISHcolorado’s initiative includes key partners including the Anti-Defamation League Mountain States Region, Rose Community Foundation, Jay and Rose Phillips Foundation, and several other donors. “Our first priority is to keep everyone in our community safe,” said Rabbi Jay Strear, JEWISHcolorado’s president and CEO. “As a community-centered institution, we’re honored to be recognized for upholding this priority, and we will continue to ensure that we do everything possible to protect against all threats.”
Since its launch, JEWISHcolorado’s Regional Safety & Security Initiative has completed 30 safety trainings reaching 550 people, conducted 50 security assessments, and helped secure $1.25 million in federal Department of Homeland Security and other grant funding, allowing recipient organizations to enhance security.
“The best prevention against any kind of threat is training and readiness. At the Hebrew Educational Alliance (HEA), the safety and security of everyone who enters our building is our top priority. It’s vital to being able to fulfill our mission as a congregation. We’re grateful to JEWISHcolorado and the Secure Community Network for providing training for our lay leaders and for helping so many organizations be better prepared and more protected,” said Lynn Geller, HEA’s interim CEO.
Initially piloted in Memphis in 2018, the model for the SCN and JEWISHcolorado partnership was developed in coordination with federal law enforcement partners and public safety experts. The program includes the design, development, and implementation of a comprehensive security framework that connects the local community to SCN’s best-practice intelligence, physical security, training, and response resources. Since the creation of the Federation-SCN partnership program, more than 90% of all full-time Federation security initiatives have followed the model.