Kohnstamm, Ken 66, of St. Paul, died peacefully on Thursday, April 4, 2013 at his home in St. Paul, MN, surrounded by family and friends after a nearly two year battle with pancreatic cancer. The son of Paul (deceased) and Maisie Kohnstamm (Redding, CT), Ken grew up in Pound Ridge, NY, the oldest of six children. After graduating from the University of Michigan Law School in 1974, he was hired by the Minnesota Attorney General's Office and moved to St. Paul, MN, where he met and married Naomi Perman, his wife of 31 years. Ken worked for the Minnesota Attorney General's Office for 39 years and ended his career as manager of the Civil Litigation Unit. Throughout his career, Ken was respected by colleagues and opposing counsel, who admired his thoughtful, compassionate, fair, and respectful demeanor and dogged commitment to high standards of professionalism. Because of his dedication to public service, Ken remained at the Attorney General's Office for his entire career. Two cases that served as bookends for Ken's career resulted in improved treatment and care of developmentally disabled individuals in state-run facilities. He also launched the Medicaid Fraud Division under Minnesota Attorney General Warren Spannaus. Ken represented the State of Minnesota in cases that included the consumer fraud, torts, and the 35W bridge collapse case. Ken was a vigorous advocate for legal representation of the underserved and was recognized for his passion to this cause. Most recently, the Minnesota Justice Foundation honored him with its Distinguished Service Award and Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services ("SMRLS") present him with its Lifetime Achievement Award. Ken is survived by his wife, Naomi Perman and his sons, Adam (29), a law student, daughter-in-law, Sarah, and Alexander (24), a filmmaker. Ken was a loving, kind, and devoted husband and father who loved sharing life's adventures and beauty with his family. His greatest passion was baseball. His family, friends, and colleagues mourn his passing. A funeral service will be held at 1 PM on TUESDAY, APRIL 9th at TEMPLE ISRAEL, 2324 Emerson Avenue South, Minneapolis. Memorial donations can be made to Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services, 1000 Alliance Bank Center, 55 E 5th St, St. Paul, MN 55101. Shiva will be held at Temple Israel at 7 pm on Tuesday, April 9. Hodroff-Epstein 612-871-1234 www.hodroffepstein.com
This obituary was originally published in the Star Tribune.