Champaign City Council to consider naming street after rabbi

The Champaign Council Study Session is currently considering a proposal for a new street name honoring Rabbi Benjamin Frankel.

In 1923, Frankel, then 26 years old, founded what would become the Hillel Center for Jewish Life at the University.

Today, 550 Hillel Centers can be found on college campuses across the world, Bari Goldman, communications associate for Illini Hillel Cohen Center, said in an email.

“Rabbi Frankel created a home for those who did not feel as though they had a home in Champaign,” Goldman said. “He created a voice for the voiceless and an outlet for students to learn about their heritage.”

If approved, Rabbi Frankel’s honorary street sign will be located on John Street between Fifth and Sixth streets, where the Center has been located since 1949.

On April 24, the Champaign City Council approved the initial request for the street designation, Goldman said.

The council must give a second vote of approval on May 15 and, if approved, John Street between Fifth and Sixth will become Honorary Rabbi Ben Frankel Way.

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