Honors and Awards

Bar Admissions

  • Minnesota
  • Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota


  • William Mitchell College of Law, J.D., cum laude
  • University of Minnesota, M.Ed.
  • University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, B.A., with honors

Mike Molenda was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1950. He grew up in the Milwaukee suburb of Greenfield where he attended high school and participated in swimming, golf, and drama. After high school, Mike attended the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse where he continued to swim and where he met his wife Linda.

Upon graduating from UW-La Crosse, he accepted a position as a physical education teacher at Rosemount Middle School and as head boys swimming coach for Rosemount High School. He served in both of these roles until 1978 when he left coaching and pursued a law degree from William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul. Mike graduated from law school, cum laude, in 1982.

Mike retired from the practice of law at the beginning of 2017 but still serves as a parenting time expeditor, parenting consultant and Early Neutral Evaluator.

Mike enjoys golfing and traveling with his wife of 42 years, Linda. They have a daughter, son-in-law, and two grandsons. Mike is very active in the International Association of Lions Clubs, serving as club president, District Governor for the Lions Clubs in Ramsey, Dakota and Washington Counties in 2010-2011 and as Counsel Chairperson for the Lions Clubs in Minnesota, Manitoba and Northwest Ontario in 2011-2012. At the 2013 Lions Convention held in Hamburg, Germany, Mike was elected to serve a 2-year term on the International Board of Directors. He was chosen to chair the Board’s Constitution and By-Laws Committee for 2014-2015.

  • Representative Cases
    • State v. Powell, 357 N.W.2d 146 (Minn. Ct. App. 1984)
    • Wood v. Schlagel, 375 N.W.2d 561 (Minn. Ct. App. 1985)
    • Kelm v. Kelm, 1988 Minn. App. LEXIS 145 (Minn. Ct. App. 1988)
    • McDonnell v. Comm. of Public Safety, 460 N.W.2d 363 (Minn. Ct. App. 1990)
    • Radke v. Radke, 1990 Minn. Ct. App. LEXIS 540 (Minn. App. 1990)
    • Knutson v. City of Coates, 519 N.W.2d 166 (Minn. 1994)
    • V.G. v. Bates, 1997 Minn. App. LEXIS 430 (Minn. App. 1997)
    • Lisser v. Lisser, 2006 Minn. App. Unpub. LEXIS 1389 (Minn. App. 2006)

Pro Bono Activities

  • Legal Aid of Dakota County (1983 - 2016)
  • Legal Advisor to the Minnesota Lions Vision (2006 – 2013) and Hearing Foundation (2011 – 2013)
  • Legal Advisor to Lions Multiple District 5M (2012 - 2013)

Community Involvement

  • Hastings Lions Club
  • Minnesota Lions Vision Foundation, Past Chairman and Legal Advisor to the Board of Directors. The Minnesota Lions Eye Bank encourages cornea donations following death and processes the donated corneas to exacting federal standards. The corneas are used to return the gift of sight to individuals in need of corneal transplants
  • Apple Valley Chamber of Commerce, Three-year Member of Board of Directors
  • Hastings Chamber of Commerce, Member
  • Airplane Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), Member