Rutgers Slip is Co-named ‘Frank T. Modica Way’ for Local Advocate

Posted on: May 5th, 2015 at 10:35 am by

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Where South St. meets Rutgers Slip

As of this week, Rutgers Slip between South and Cherry Street now carries a shared identity. The short waterfront block has been co-named in honor of Frank T. Modica, a staunch local advocate who passed away in September 2013 at the age of 81.

“We were determined to remember him with a lasting public tribute in recognition of over 35 years of service to the Two Bridges and wider Chinatown, Lower East Side, and New York Community,” Two Bridges Neighborhood Council President Victor Papa noted in a recent public statement.

The official press unveiling is set for tomorrow afternoon at 5pm. Representatives from Councilwoman Margaret Chin’s office, members of the Hamilton Madison House board, Two Bridges residents, and Frank Modica’s family (wife and son) will all be in attendance for the photo op.

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Frank Modica, Photo: NASW

Frank T. Modica was a social worker by trade and a leader in the settlement house movement in New York City.

From 1976 – 2010, he served as Executive Director of Hamilton-Madison House (HMH), a more-than-century-old non-profit settlement house dedicated to improving the quality of life for individuals and families. Under his 34 years of stewardship, HMH grew to become one of the nation’s leading providers of Behavioral Health Services to Asian and Asian-American communities.

Mr. Modica also served on the boards of a number of local, national, and international organizations including United Neighborhood Centers of America; and International Federation of Settlements and Neighborhood Centers. Most notably, Mr. Modica served on the Board of Two Bridges Neighborhood Council since 1977, during which time the organization created permanently affordable housing for thousands of families and individuals.

Co-naming streets is an arduous process of navigating a bureaucratic minefield of red tape. Streets targeted for such treatment must first appear before the appropriate community board for approval, and then on to the City Council. CB3 carries specific guidelines to green-light these pitches: (a) Fifteen years of community involvement or (b) An exceptional accomplishment worthy of highlighting. Recent examples that failed are Beastie Boys Square (Ludlow) and Sol Moscot Way (Orchard).

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