United States Attorney’s Office Paralegal Receives Department of Justice Award for Exceptional Service

United States Attorney’s Office Paralegal Receives Department of Justice Award for Exceptional Service

            Montgomery, Alabama – This morning, during a ceremony in the Great Hall at the Robert F. Kennedy Main Justice Building in Washington, D.C., Debbie Shaw, a supervisory paralegal specialist at the United States Attorney’s Office, received the Executive Office for United States Attorneys Director’s Lifetime Exceptional Service Award, announced United States Attorney Sandra J. Stewart. Attorney General Merrick B. Garland, Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco, and other senior Department of Justice leaders participated in the awards ceremony.

            Ms. Shaw has worked for the United States Attorney’s Office since 1982, serving at various times as a receptionist, criminal division legal assistant, and assistant to the United States Attorney. During that time, she has supported the work of the office and the Department of Justice in virtually every way imaginable. She has assisted in preparing and presenting nearly every significant case brought by the office over the past four decades. She has, on a near daily basis, coordinated with court personnel, law enforcement agents, and other officials, resolving every logistical issue that might arise in the office’s work. She has trained incoming legal support employees (and helped to train younger attorneys), always passing along the lessons she has learned and knowledge she has gained over the years. She has carefully read and edited attorney work product, ensuring that the work of the office is concise, professional, and persuasive. Although Ms. Shaw would likely describe her service as simply “doing her job,” the award issued today reflects the fact that Ms. Shaw is a cornerstone of the United States Attorney’s Office, the Montgomery legal community, and the Department of Justice at large.

            “No award or honor could ever capture all that Ms. Shaw has meant to the United States Attorney’s Office over the years,” stated United States Attorney Stewart. “Everyone who has worked at the office has benefitted from her work, her guidance, and her wisdom. I am delighted that the Department chose to recognize her and that I was able to be present as she received this award.”

            For almost 30 years, Ms. Shaw worked closely with Louis V. Franklin, Sr., Deputy Director of Enforcement for the Alabama Securities Commission and a former United States Attorney and Chief of the office’s Criminal Division. Mr. Franklin said, “Debbie is the office’s central nervous system, integrating information received from the public, client agencies, and the courts, then coordinating the response of the various office working components. To every employee, she offers institutional knowledge, warnings of danger, and a welcoming presence. She is the personification of support and cannot be replicated. She is so deserving of this award!”

            The United States Attorney’s Office congratulates Ms. Shaw on this high honor and expresses its deepest gratitude for her years of service.

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