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Judge Profile:

Senior Judge John L. Holahan
(retired 2013)

Hennepin County


Appointed in 1995.
Elected in 1996, 2002, and 2008.

Retired on July 1, 2013.

Appointed and assigned to serve statewide as Senior Judge from July 9, 2013, to June 30, 2015.


J.D., William Mitchell College of Law, 1974
B.S., St. Cloud State University, 1970


President, John L. Holahan Jr., P.A., 1992
Vice President, Frisbee & Holahan, Ltd., 1985
Sole Practitioner, 1975
Trial Court Clerk, Fourth Judicial District, 1972
Court Clerk, Hennepin County Municipal Court, 1970

Professional Memberships

  • Minnesota District Court Judges Association
  • American Trial Lawyers Association
  • Minnesota Trial Lawyers Association
  • Minnesota State Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers, past president and board member
  • Hennepin County District Court, volunteer Family Court settlement referee
  • Lawyers Professional Responsibility Board, volunteer attorney supervisor
  • Academy of Family Mediators

Additional Information

Assignment History

  • Adult Drug Court, Jan. 2010-July 2013
  • Adult DWI Court, Jan. 2007-July 2013
  • Civil Block & Criminal, Jan. 2002-Dec. 2009
  • Family & Criminal, Jan. 1997-Dec. 2001
  • Criminal, Feb. 1995-Dec. 1996

Judicial Activities

  • Served as Presiding Judge of Drug Court and DWI court
  • Five years of service in Family Court
  • Appointed to Board on Judicial Standards in Mar. 1997 by Governor Arne Carlson
  • Reappointed to Board on Judicial Standards in Jan. 2000 by Governor Jesse Ventura
  • Elected chair of Board on Judicial Standards in Jan. 2003
  • Former member of the Executive Committee of the Fourth Judicial District
  • Former member of the Criminal Committee of the Fourth Judicial District
  • Former member of the Civil Committee of the Fourth Judicial District
  • Former member of the Facilities Committee of the Fourth Judicial District
  • Minnesota Supreme Court Judicial Education Faculty
  • Member of the Criminal Jury Instruction Committee of the Minnesota District Court Judges Association
  • Member of the Governing Council of the Hennepin County Bar Association
  • Member of the Judicial Stress Prevention Committee of the Conference of Chief Judges
  • Volunteer Judge, Minnesota State Bar Association Mock Trial Program
  • Volunteer Judge, National Mock Trial Tournament, Hamline Law School
  • Volunteer Judge, William E. McGee, National Civil Rights Moot Court Competition, University of Minnesota
  • Volunteer Judge, National Moot Court Competition, William Mitchell College of Law
  • Co-chair, Bench/Bar Committee of Hennepin County Bar Association
  • Member, Minnesota Supreme Court Code of Judicial Conduct Advisory Committee

Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice

  • State of Minnesota
  • United States Federal District Court of Minnesota
  • United States Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • United States Supreme Court

Other activities

  • Minnesota Ethical Practices Board Chair - July 1994-Feb. 1995
  • Minnesota Ethical Practices Board member - appointed by Governor Arne Carlson on April 21, 1993
  • Member of Governor's Commission on Public Service Reform - 1994 Circuit Court of Appeals