Co-Chair, Judicial Selection Committee, Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association (‘19-’20; former Board member, including President, 2013-2018)
At-Large Board Member, Minnesota Chapter, Federal Bar Association ('19-'20, with service on board since 2017)
Governing Council Member, Minnesota State Bar Association Labor & Employment Section ('17-'20)
Member, Minnesota State Bar Association
Member, Minnesota Chapter, National Employment Lawyers Association
In or out of the courtroom, Ben Kwan’s innate ability to share a compelling story drives his client advocacy. Prior to law school, he put that talent to use as a television news anchor and reporter with CBS and FOX affiliates in Michigan and working with a South African national news network in Cape Town and Johannesburg.
As a Partner and Founder of Haller Kwan LLP, Ben primarily represents employees who have been treated illegally in the workplace. Clients and colleagues welcome his strong voice, patient listening skills, and creative legal mind. He’s a dynamic advocate for wrongfully terminated employees, those thrust into a whistleblower role, and those who have experienced discrimination and retaliation. Ben also represents employees facing various other legal dilemmas including exit counseling, severance negotiations, non-compete counseling, and other contractual negotiations and civil disputes.
Ben’s empathy for workers was nurtured from an early age. “My father is an immigrant from China. He arrived with the proverbial ‘nothing but the clothes on his back.’ To him, work was the only path to a better life and – quite frankly – dignity. To this day, my father serves as a role model for my advocacy. Work in restaurants was his path to dignity and meaning.”
Understanding the indignities caused by discrimination or losing a job, Ben works hard to put clients first, and at ease. To him, it’s personal. Spending extra time to ensure a client understands the legal process, making the additional phone call or sending the detailed email, are all part of Ben’s commitment to help his clients move forward with their lives.
A Magna Cum Laude graduate of the University of St. Thomas School of Law, Ben served as the Note & Comment Editor of the UST Law Journal. He currently serves as the Judicial Selection Committee Co-Chair of the Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association where he formerly served as President in 2016-2017. From time to time, you’ll still find Ben slinging chop suey at his family’s Chinese restaurant in Eden Prairie, Red Moon Chinese Cafe. Ben grew up in Bloomington, Minnesota, and is a proud graduate of Bloomington Kennedy High School.
United States District Court, District of Minnesota
University of St. Thomas School of Law
J.D. (magna cum laude)
Honors: Dean’s List all six semesters, Dean's Awards for top grades in a half dozen courses including legal writing and complex litigation
Note & Comment Editor, UST Law Journal
Northwestern University, Medill School of Journalism
B.S. Journalism and Asian and Middle East Studies (China Concentration)
Employment Law: A Primer, Representing the Ongoing Business - Minnesota Business Law Series, Minnesota Continuing Legal Education, February 2017.
Kevin D. McCarry--Phantom Mentor No More, Minnesota Lawyer, February 22, 2016.
'Korematsu': Unbinding the Binding Authority, Minnesota Lawyer, September 28, 2015.
Volunteers Needed Who ‘Look Like’ Student Debaters, Minnesota Lawyer, October 30, 2014.
Share Your Stories—They Matter, Minnesota Lawyer, June 16, 2014.
Law Review Article on the False Claims Act. Citation: 10 U. St. Thomas L.J. 859 (2013).
Faculty, "Three Steps to Becoming a Better Litigator—Start at the Beginning: Intake, Interviews, Initiating Suit," Minnesota Continuing Legal Education, February 27, 2018.
Panelist, "On the Path to Lawyer Well-Being," MSBA New Lawyer Leadership Conference, November 2017
Speaker, Minnesota Asian Pacific American Bar Association Annual Gala, September 2017
Featured Speaker, Stinson Leonard Street Diversity Scholars Reception, April 2017
Moderator, Affinity Bars Law Student Jobs Symposium, March 2017
Presenter, Issues in Employment Law for Transgender Minnesotans, Douglas K. Amdahl American Inn of Court, November 2016.
Panelist, Open Doors Program, Federal Bar Association, April and May 2015.
Panelist, Open Doors Program, Federal Bar Association, May 2014.
Prior Legal and Other Professional Experience
Halunen Law, 2015-2017 (associate)
Winthrop & Weinstine, P.A., 2011 (summer associate), 2012 (summer associate), 2013-2015 (associate)
News Anchor & Reporter, WWTV-TV (CBS) and WFQX-TV (FOX) in Michigan, 2005-2009
News Reporter, ETV, Cape Town and Johannesburg, South Africa, 2004