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David Wallace, The Traffic Safety Guy


A pioneer in traffic safety, David Wallace developed the first TSRP (Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor) program in Michigan becoming a national role model. As a TSRP, he facilitated a coordinated, multidisciplinary approach to the arrest and prosecution of impaired drivers and other traffic crimes as well as finding ways to respond to underage drinking. As the first Director of the National Center for DWI Courts (NCDC), David oversaw a nationwide increase of 50% in the number of DWI Courts, changing repeat impaired drivers into law-abiding citizens.

With 17 years in the courtroom as an assistant prosecutor, 7 years as a TSRP and 5 years as the Director of the NCDC, David has worked with law enforcement officers, prosecutors, judges, probation officers, treatment professionals, highway safety advocates and others, bringing a complete perspective on what needs to be done in making communities safer.

As the Traffic Safety Guy, David works to identify, develop and promote justice programs that improve public safety, reduce recidivism, and change lives. David is also back in the courtroom as an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney.  Utilizing a dual-channel model to incorporate his highway safety expertise as well as his extensive criminal justice system background, he develops the perfect safety solution.

Areas of Expertise

  1. 24 / 7 Alcohol Testing
  2. Child Traffic Safety
  3. Coalition Building
  4. Drowsy Driving
  5. Drug Recognition Experts (DRE)
  6. Drugged Driving
  7. DWI Courts / Drug Courts
  8. Ignition Interlock Devices
  9. Impaired Driving
  10. Incentives and Sanctions
  11. International Decade of Action for Road Safety
  12. Motorcycle Safety
  13. Prosecutors and the Courtroom
  14. Returning Veterans and Traffic Safety
  15. Road Rage / Aggressive Driving
  16. Senior Citizen Driving Safety
  17. Targeting in DWI Courts
  18. Teen Driving Safety
  19. Understanding the Court System for Non-Lawyers

Selected Presentations

Select Presentations – International

  • Breath Testing and Why it Works – The Need for an Implied Consent Law, NCPADD – Barbados. January 2007, 2008,  2010 and 2014
  • Building an Effective Coalition in Traffic Safety,  Breath Testing Seminar, NCPADD – Barbados. January 2006
  • Program Partnerships–DWI Courts and Alcohol, International Interlock Symposium–Melbourne, Australia. October 2009
  • Policy Issues and Ignition Interlocks International Interlock Symposium – Tallberg, Sweden, August. 2008
  • Prosecuting Animal Cruelty Cases, JAZZPURR – Animal Cruelty in Canada – Ontario, Canada. June 2003

Select Presentations – United States

  • Building a Safety Culture, NAFA 2016 Institute & Expo, Austin, Texas. April 2016
  • DUI Trends: Reaching Zero Deaths, VASAP Training Conference, Portsmouth, Virginia. September 2014
  • Alcohol Testing: Using Technology to Support Recovery, Virginia DUI Drug Treatment Courts–Roanoke, Virginia. August 2014
  • Alternative Sources of Funding for State Judicial Educators, National Association of State Judicial Educators–Boston, MA.  August 2012
  • Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over, NHTSA Press Conference, Washington DC. August 2012
  • The Promise of DWI Courts, American Judges Association–San Diego, CA. September 2011
  • DWI and Drug Courts, What Are They?  Delegation from China, Charlotte, North Carolina. April 2011
  • Drug Impaired Driving in DWI Courts, Lifesavers 2011Phoenix, Arizona. March 2011
  • DWI Courts Across the Country, Governors Highway Safety Association—Kansas City, MO. September 2010
  • Use of Search Warrants for BAC Test Results, Lifesavers 2008—Portland, Oregon. April 2008
  • New Technology Issues in the Courtroom, Lifesavers 2007 – Chicago, Illinois. March 2007
  • The ABCs of a TSRP (Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor), Idaho Annual Traffic Safety Program, Boise, Idaho. September 2006
  •  A DUI Case in the Prosecutor’s Office, Lifesavers 2006 – Austin, Texas, March 2006
  • The ABCs of a TSRP (Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor), MADD – MADD Leadership Summit – New York, New York. February 2006
  • Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutors, What are they?, TIRF – Working Group on DWI System Improvements, Orlando, Florida. April 2005
  • Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutors, How They Can Benefit You, NHTSA Regional Meeting. March 2005
  • Distracted Driving, Annual Professional Support Staff Conference – Lansing, MI. November 2007
  • The CSI Effect, Annual Professional Support Staff Conference – Frankenmuth, MI. April 2005
  • Underage Drinking, 8th Annual Michigan Traffic Safety Summit – Grand Rapids, MI. April 2003
  • Community Prosecution and Traffic Safety, 7th Annual Michigan Traffic Safety Summit: Traffic Safety Laws and the Traffic Safety Training Program – Lansing, MI. April 2002
  • The Role of the Victim Advocate in Vehicular Homicide Cases, Annual Victim Rights Advocates Conference – Thompsonville, MI. May 2001
  • Communicating to a Victim Using Accelerated Principles of Learning, Annual Victim Rights Advocates Conference – Thompsonville, MI. May 2001

Selected Articles

  • Building Consensus on Alcohol Misuse and Crime.  Providing an individualized sentence can be a judge’s greatest blessing or biggest curse. If the sentence is appropriate, the judge may never see that person in a courtroom again. It is time to step up and work together.  Highway to Justice, American Bar Association, Summer 2015.
  • Repeat Drink Drivers: Ending the Cycle, is it an Impossible Dream? Unlike what some people contend, there is no silver bullet to end drink driving. Like the people committing it, impaired driving is a complex issue requiring a variety of tools to fight it. A new tool in the effort to stop repeat impaired driving are DWI Courts. A DWI Court specifically works with repeat/addicted offenders by implementing intensive supervision and long-term treatment to address the underlying problems and change the person’s behavior so they do not repeat. Paper and Presentation at the Australiasian Road Safety Research, Policing and Education Conference, November 2014.
  • Verify Then Trust: Supervising the DWI Offender.  A critical component of any supervision of a DWI offender is frequent alcohol and drug testing, and this article focuses on those components while looking at possible technological tools to support that effort. NPAMC, The Voice on Alcohol Misuse and Crime, June 2013.
  • The Promise of DWI Courts:  What Does It Mean and Why Should Prosecutors Care?  A discussion of DWI Courts, what they are, how they are saving lives and why prosecutors should be involved as a DWI Court team member.  Chapman Journal of Criminal Justice, Spring 2011.
  • Do DWI Courts Work? An article discussing the research and effectiveness of DWI Courts. Future Trends in State Courts 2008, page 92. National Center for State Courts.
  • Reputation Management – Or What Color Is Your Hat? A joint article for the newsletter “Between the Lines” discussing the importance of a prosecutor’s reputation and what needs to be done by  prosecutor to ensure a positive reputation in the community.  Between the Lines, National Traffic Law Center, National District Attorneys Association, December 2007.
  • Enforcing Underage Drinking Laws, Should We?  A discussion on why underage drinking is deadly and why the laws dealing with underage drinking need to be enforced.  Between the Lines, National Traffic Law Center, National District Attorneys Association, Winter 2005.
  • Prior Convictions in Impaired Driving Prosecutions – Targeting the Hardcore Impaired Driver.  A monograph for prosecutors providing guidance on finding prior convictions for impaired drivers.  National Traffic Law Center, National District Attorneys Association, August 2004.

Honors and Awards

  • Kevin E. Quinlan Award for Excellence in Traffic Safety, Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility,  December 2013
  • Public Safety Award, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, April 2013
  • William Van Regenmorter Public Safety Award, MADD Michigan, August 2008
  • National Adjudication Award, National Commission Against Drunk Driving, December 2004
  • Certificate of Commendation, Governors Highway Safety Administration, July 2003
  • Arson Prosecutor of the Year, International Association of Arson Investigators – MI Chapter, May 2000


  • Board of Directors, Michigan Association of Treatment Courts, 2016-Present
  • Advisory Board, We Save Lives, June 2013-Present
  • Traffic Safety Committee, National Sheriffs Association, 2009-Present
  • Board of Directors, National Partnership on Alcohol Misuse and Crime, 2009-2015
  • Working Group on DWI System Improvements, Traffic Injury Research Foundation, 2004-2013
  • Traffic Safety Working Committee, National Association of Prosecutor Coordinators/NHTSA, 2002-2007
  • Chairperson – Committee to revise “Lethal Weapon” Training Program, NHTSA, 2004
  • Member – Committee to revise “Prosecuting The Intoxicated Driver” Training Program, NHTSA, 2003
David Wallace
The Traffic Safety Guy
David, the Traffic Safety Guy, works to identify, develop and promote justice programs that improve public safety, reduce recidivism, and change lives.

David Wallace, the Traffic Safety Guy

David Wallace, the Traffic Safety Guy talks about Corporate Traffic Safety

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