The International Center for Law and Religion Studies was pleased to honor Senior Judge J. Clifford Wallace of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit with the 2009 Distinguished Service Award for Religious Freedom, presented Sunday, October 4, during the opening session of the 16th Annual International Law and Religion Symposium. “Judge Wallace has contributed to the growth of strong judiciaries in many parts of the world, particularly in Asia,” notes ICLRS Director, Professor W. Cole Durham, Jr. “He has been a remarkable judge, a remarkable friend of democracy and democratization, and a great friend of human liberty. And this is part of a much broader pattern in his life. We are grateful that we have been able to work for so many years with such a devoted friend and supporter of the Center.”
A native of San Diego, a Navy veteran, and a 1955 graduate of the University of California Boalt Hall School of Law, Judge Wallace has devoted more than 50 years to the law, as partner in a San Diego law firm, as a United States District Judge for the Southern District of California, and as member, and from 1991-1996 Chief Judge, of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Since assuming Senior status in 1996, Judge Wallace has spent much of his time traveling the every continent of the world to promote the rule of law in developing countries. He was featured on the cover of the August 2009 edition of California Lawyer for this work. A prolific writer, lecturer, and teacher, he has taught courses in judicial administration in the United States and throughout the world and has consulted with more than 50 judiciaries worldwide. He developed the concept of the Conference of Chief Justices of Asia and the Pacific and originated the idea and developed the concept for the American Inns of Court. Judge Wallace and his wife, Dr. Jenee Wallace, have a blended family of 15 children and 51 grandchildren.
Throughout his long and distinguished career of professional, church, and community service, Judge Wallace has received a great many honors, recognitions, and awards, including the 2005 Edward J. Devitt Distinguished Service to Justice Award, generally regarded as “the most prestigious honor conferred on a member of the federal judiciary.” The International Center for Law and Religion Studies now bestows its highest honor, the Distinguished Service Award for Religious Freedom, upon its great friend, Senior Judge J. Clifford Wallace.