Stephen M. Premo has represented people of all walks of life, as well as businesses, with stellar results. His experience includes representing clients in sensitive, high-stakes matters involving allegations of securities and wire fraud, theft, breaches of fiduciary duty, deceptive trade practices, criminal sexual misconduct, as well as foreign and domestic corporate espionage. In the course of representing multiple whistleblowers, Stephen has coordinated with multiple regulatory and law enforcement agencies—both civil and criminal—in high-profile government investigations featured on the front page of the Wall Street Journal. Of course, many clients prefer their legal affairs to stay out of the newspapers,and some of Stephen’s greatest successes include matters that have been resolved confidentially, without publicity. 


In 2017, The Minnesota Lawyer named Stephen Attorney of the Year for his success in Friedlander v. Edwards Lifesciences, LLC, a landmark Minnesota Supreme Court ruling that significantly changed the state of Minnesota’s whistleblower laws.


Stephen has also helped secure multiple, seven-figure pre-litigation recoveries for his individual clients, including a $1 million settlement on behalf of a Rochester police officer after the City of Rochester violated her constitutional and statutory rights. The Star Tribune covered the case in a September 19, 2017 article entitled Rochester, Police Officer Settle Bias Claim for $1 Million.


When he is not working, Stephen enjoys writing short paeans to his wife and unamused dog on his guitar. (Stephen is the only person at MADEL PA who would use the word "paean.") He also runs, but for vanity’s sake rather than competition. He can follow a recipe and even stray from one when circumstances warrant. He has heard no complaints about his cooking but allows for the possibility they occur behind his back. 

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Phone:  612-605-0630

representative cases

  • Lead counsel representing a whistleblower, James Friedlander, against his employer in Friedlander v. Edwards Lifesciences, LLC. Before Friedlander, the federal bench had unanimously ruled against employees in interpreting amendments to Minnesota’s whistleblower law. Based on this unanimous authority, the defendant moved to dismiss Friedlander’s case. Using a rarely invoked procedure, Stephen asked the district court to certify the legal question presented by the amendments to the Minnesota Supreme Court. The district court granted his request. The Minnesota Supreme Court ruled in favor of his client, and after discovery, the parties ultimately reached a private settlement.

  • Lead counsel representing a female oil field worker in a sex discrimination lawsuit against her former employer. After spending months building his client’s case, the employer declared bankruptcy after oil prices tanked—potentially dooming the chances of recovery. Rather than accepting that his client would have to stand in the back of the bankruptcy line as an unsecured creditor, Stephen maneuvered his client’s case out of the bankruptcy by agreeing to seek only the liability limits of an applicable insurance policy. The court lifted the bankruptcy stay, and Stephen continued prosecuting his client’s case. The case later settled. The case was featured in Blaire Briody’s The New Wild West: Black Gold, Fracking, and Life in a North Dakota Boomtown (St. Martin’s Press 2017).

PLEASE NOTE:  All cases are different and past results do not predict future case outcomes.


  • Named a “Minnesota Rising Star” by Super Lawyers (2019, 2020)


  • Reanimating Dead Law: Employer sorcery after the Minnesota Whistleblower Act amendments, Bench & Bar of Minnesota (Jan. 2017)


  • It’s About Sending a Message: Pleading Punitive Damages, MN-NELA (2018)

  • Friedlander: The Canary Does, In Fact, Sing Again (2017)

  • Adverse Actions after Burlington v. White, MN-NELA (2016)

bar admissions

  • U.S. District Court, Minnesota

  • U.S. District Court, District of North Dakota

  • State of Minnesota


  • J.D., cum laude, University of Minnesota Law School, Minneapolis, Minnesota 

    • Staff Member, Minnesota Law Review

    • Student Editor, Constitutional Commentary

  • B.A., University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, Virginia