B’nai Abraham Brenham Historic Synagogue Receives Stewardship Award
Preservation Austin, the Capital City’s leading nonprofit voice for historic preservation, has named the B’nai Abraham Brenham Historic Synagogue on the Dell Jewish Community Campus “one of the best preservation projects from the past two years.” Shalom Austin will receive the Stewardship Award at the 57th Annual Preservation Merit Awards Celebration at the Driskill Hotel on Friday, November 3 from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Tickets to the annual luncheon are $125 and support the year round advocacy efforts and educational programming of Preservation Austin. Shalom Austin plans to host one or more tables. Please contact Jay Rubin, former Shalom Austin CEO, at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in attending.
Established in 1960, the juried award program celebrates the hard work and visionary approaches of those contributing to Austin’s architectural, cultural and environmental heritage.
Other 2017 award recipients include: Texas State Capitol Exterior Preservation Project, Six Square: Austin’s Black Cultural District, Green Pastures, Darnall House, Owings-Allen-Miller House, Thorne House, Young House, and the new Megabus depot.
“We’re particularly pleased to honor such diverse projects that represent such a broad cross-section of our history,” said Preservation Austin Executive Director Kate Singleton. “These projects breathe new life into our historic places and make Austin a more interesting and authentic city for us all.”
In announcing the award, the Preservation Austin jury declared that “the love and commitment of Shalom Austin, along with Brenham’s Leon and Mimi Toubin, to preserving B’nai Abraham as a synagogue is phenomenal. Moving the building involved difficult decisions followed by years of hard work ad fundraising, but with wonderful results.”
Jurors included Sally Fly, Program Director, Texas Society of Architects; Bess Graham, Architect, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department; Sarah Marshall, Small Business Specialist/ Assistant State Coordinator, Texas Main Street Program; John Riedie, Chief Executive Officer, Austin Creative Alliance and Haley Wilcox, Partner, Ogee Preservation.
Located in downtown Brenham, Texas, and built in 1893 to serve Jewish immigrant families from Poland and Lithuania, B’nai Abraham (Children of Abraham) Synagogue served as Brenham’s sole Jewish house of worship in regular use through the early 1960s and is the oldest synagogue building in continuous use in the Lone Star State.
Relocated three years ago to the Dell Jewish Community Campus, B’nai Abraham today is in constant use. Congregation Tiferet Israel, Austin’s sole and growing Modern Orthodox congregation, holds daily, Sabbath and holiday worship services as well as Bible and Jewish text study in the Leon and Mimi Toubin Sanctuary. Shalom Austin also conducts educational programs in the building and makes the space available to other community organizations and to individuals and families for Jewish lifecycle ceremonies. ■
Visit www.shalomaustin.org/brenham for a complete archive of articles and videos about B’nai Abraham.