A Person to Honor


On February 20, 2020 in New Orleans, Louisiana, Mona Lisa Wallace received the Tommy Malone American Eagle Award from the Southern Trial Lawyers Association.  The honor is only awarded for those whose calling is to help others. The recipient must be an embodying symbol of integrity, bravery, freedom, pride, and strength. Mona Lisa Wallace has demonstrated these characteristics throughout her career and continues to do so. 

Attorney Charles G. Monett III introduced and recognized Wallace for her resilient work and representation of justice.  He acknowledged her unwavering fight for justice for those preyed upon by the Payday Lending industry. He recognized her for protecting car purchasers from unethical and immoral car dealers, who took advantage and forced them to buy things they didn’t want.  He recognized her for helping retirees of steel industries to receive or keep their medical benefits. When the audience thought he was done, he celebrated Wallace for her long fight against the hog industry where clients were subjected to industrialized hog farming with effects reaching their backyards. 

The audience applauded in respect and awe over Mona Wallace’s massive effect on the lives of others, and in pursuit of the justice system. 

Wallace was not only a recipient of the American Eagle Award, but she is also the first female since 2006 to receive the award after fourteen male recipients. 

When Wallace stepped on the stage, she graciously accepted her award.  She told the audience about her appreciation for North Carolina and how humbled she was to serve the people. She remembered the first time she met Tommy Malone, the first-ever recipient of the American Eagle Award, and recalled him as kind and giving. She recounted his work in the civil rights movement, and his plight to do what was right. 

The night was filled with joy and delight over Wallace’s award. From a humble upbringing in Salisbury and Spencer to founder and co-partner of a firm that represents tens of thousands of clients, to an award-winning lawyer and former president of Public Justice, to a mother, grandmother, and community leader, Mona Lisa Wallace has managed to set the bar high for upcoming lawyers and attorneys. “Receiving the Tommy Malone American Eagle Award was such an honor,” Mona Lisa Wallace says, “but my staff has also helped in this long journey of what is right for our clients.”  

At Wallace & Graham, we are committed to our clients and their well-being. If you have questions about or need help with employment benefits, personal injury or death, work-related injuries, social security disability, or environmental litigation, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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