Humphrey School of Public Affairs, May 25, 2022
Lee Wallace received a master of public policy with a concentration in nonprofit management in 2005 from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota. She is the CEO and co-owner of Peace Coffee, which was created to ensure fair prices and supply chain transparency for small coffee farmers around the world. Wallace is described as a remarkable pioneer in fair trade, sustainable, organic farming; craft roasting methods; employee-friendly workplaces; and community involvement. She is credited with leading Peace Coffee to become Minnesota’s first Public Benefit Corporation and its only B Corp coffee company. She is dedicated to upholding human rights and safeguarding the environment. Wallace purchases almost a million pounds of coffee from 11 countries and 20 small farmer cooperatives cultivating 2,200 acres of shade covered, organically managed land. She has opened four Twin Cities cafes, compensates all entry-level staff above minimum wage, and donates several cash grants and nearly $50,000 in coffee to local nonprofits annually. Wallace serves as a teacher and mentor to up-and-coming social venture leaders, and gives generously of her time and expertise to numerous U.S. and international organizations.
Biographies are as-of time of award presentation.