Harvard College, BA
Yale Law School, JD
Georgetown University Law Center, LLM
King's College, Cambridge University, Diploma in Economics
Yale Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, MA, M.Phil.
About Ken Barnes
Ken strives to achieve the best results for his clients, through whatever means is most suited to the particular client and particular circumstances. Sometimes he gets results for his clients through negotiations, before initiating any court action. Sometimes he helps clients reach a beneficial settlement after legal proceedings are under way. And sometimes he has to take the case to trial and through an appeal in order to obtain meaningful results for his client.
Ken's legal experience extends to many types of disputes, including:
- employment issues (including discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, and wage and hour disputes)
- domestic matters (divorce, child custody and domestic violence)
- civil rights violations
- children's rights
- consumer protection
- professional licensing disputes
- freedom of information requests
He has helped clients who have been treated unfairly in relation to their jobs, their working conditions, their housing, their health care, and other legal rights.
Ken has represented clients' interests in all levels of New Hampshire state courts, and in federal district and appellate courts throughout the United States, including through class actions and other complex litigation. Where appropriate, Ken is a proponent of mediation and collaborative law as ways of resolving disputes without the expense and stress of litigation.
Ken also has experience working on complex litigation, including large class actions Hawkins v. Commissioner, DHHS (class of 58,000 children); Unnamed Employees v. Large Retailer (employees forced to work off the clock) and system-change ("impact") cases United States v. Yonkers Bd of Education (desegregation); Hawkins v. NH Dept of Health & Human Services (NH Right-to-Know Law).
In addition, Ken provides mediation services in cases where he does not represent either side. As the facilitator of the negotiations, Ken helps the parties and their attorneys come to an agreement that all parties can accept.
Ken is admitted to practice in New Hampshire and New York (state courts), as well as in many federal courts including the United States Supreme Court.
Prior to entering private practice, Ken served in the U.S. Department of Justice, first in the Civil Division and then in the Civil Rights Division.
His experience includes judicial clerkships with the First Circuit Court of Appeals and the New Hampshire Supreme Court.
Ken spent more than eight (8) years working as an advocate for impoverished families, children and the elderly in positions at Bronx (NY) Legal Services and at New Hampshire Legal Assistance.
As Director of the Equal Employment & Public Accommodations Division of the New York City Commission on Human Rights, Ken managed a team of neutral investigators who evaluated the evidence to determine whether there was probable cause to believe that an employer violated the laws against discrimination.
- New Hampshire Bar Association, Board of Governors (2007-present).
NHBA Committee on Professionalism, Chair (2006-present).
NHBA Labor & Employment Committee, Chair (2008-present).
NHBA Federal Practice Section, Chair (2007-08).
NHBA Ethics Committee.
NHBA Committee on Cooperation with the Courts.
New Hampshire Supreme Court, Citizens Commission on New Hampshire State Courts.
Collaborative Alliance of New Hampshire, Board of Directors.
New Hampshire Association for Justice (formerly NH Trial Lawyers Association).
NH Chapter of National Employment Lawyers Association.
American Bar Association.
Among his community service efforts, Ken has served on the New Hampshire Child Protection Task Force; the Citizens Review Panel for the Division of Children Youth & Families (DCYF); and on the Board of Directors of the Disabilities Rights Center (2000-07). He has been an assistant coach for the Hopkinton Youth Sports Association; and worked on issues of local concern with the Concerned Citizens of Contoocook. Temple Beth Jacob, Second Vice President and Member, Board of Trustees.
Ken is frequently invited to speak at training programs, for attorneys and non-attorneys. He explains substantive issues (such as employment law), as well as the skills and strategy of trial practice.
Ken is an avid tennis player, a competent skier, and a mediocre but enthusiastic golfer. He is passionate about jazz and enjoys traveling to interesting places where he can absorb the culture and soak up the natural beauty.