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Jewish Tennis Director Talks about Facility's Role in Promoting Heritage and Tennis

May 5, 2020 11:42 AM

Commemorating Jewish American Heritage Month

By Adam Silverstein / Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta

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Adam Silverstein

From the minute I picked up a racquet as a young boy, tennis has enriched every aspect of my life. I first discovered the joys of the sport when I started playing with my father and older brother at my local country club in Charlotte, NC, when I was 5 years old. I found a love for the game at that early age and as I became older, I spent my summers with my father traveling the state playing in USTA-sanctioned junior tournaments. I achieved a top-10 ranking in NC, was the high school state doubles champion, and played DI tennis for NC State University in 1975.

Through the years, I continued to actively play competitive tennis with ALTA and USTA, but it was later in life when I joined the tennis teaching profession. For 10 years, I owned a packaging and shipping business in Dunwoody, but when the economy took a downturn in 2007, I decided to make a career change, returning to the sport that had been my lifelong passion. I became certified with both the PTR and the USPTA in 2007. I joined the PGA Tour Superstores as a head tennis pro, and after six years, I left to become the head tennis pro at the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta (MJCCA), located in Dunwood, GA, in February 2013. I was promoted to tennis director about two years later.

I am very fortunate to be a part of the staff at the MJCCA. The center has a family atmosphere and has been voted an AJC Top Workplace every year since 2012. We have over a dozen USTA and ALTA tennis teams including men, women, and juniors of all levels. Our tennis team players have become lifetime friends from being a part of our tennis community. Playing socially, competitively, and having fun while learning to improve is exactly who we are at the MJCCA. Our members are passionate, caring, and giving. I have grown as a tennis professional and become a better person since joining the Marcus JCC. I am very grateful for the opportunity to both be in a profession that I love, and to work in a caring community with Jewish values.

Working at the MJCCA has been a meaningful experience, giving me opportunities to grow in my Jewish faith, heritage, and customs through community outreach, holiday celebrations, and an array of programming options.  In addition to thriving in this environment of Jewish values, and the friends I have made, I get to work with people who have become my family.

I have two daughters and two granddaughters. I am a member of the Wilson Advisory Staff, love Atlanta sports teams, and am passionate about UNC men’s college basketball. I love teaching tennis, enjoy studying the game every day, and seeing my students improve. I am blessed.

COVID-19 has had a huge impact on the MJCCA as we have been closed from March 15 through June 1 when all tennis programming came to a halt. Private and semiprivate lessons will start back and hopefully by mid-summer we will have all programs back up and running. We are having a phase 1 reopening on June 1, but the financial effect has been substantial.

The Southern Cares Initiative has been a welcome opportunity to me and our facility. All of us tennis professionals and our facilities are grateful for USTA Southern for setting up this relief fund.

 

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