Find a Union Writer – Henry Pan

First Name
Last Name
Twitter Handle
Freelance photographer and writer focusing on social justice, transportation, land use, and post-George Floyd unrest recovery efforts in Minneapolis based in the Twin Cities (and occasionally in San Francisco, where I'm from) with bylines in MinnPost and the Minnesota Reformer.
Image Caption
Work Sample 1 Description
Abi Baires Amaya, the owner of Abi’s Cafe at Lake and Bloomington, looks forward to opening a much larger restaurant at the former Egg and I space near Lyn-Lake sometime next month.

“It’s way bigger than what we have now,” Amaya, who goes by her middle name, said of the new space. With the support of her aunt, who lives in the Twin Cities, she moved here five years ago from the East Coast to open the restaurant, which serves Salvadoran cuisine.

Like Amaya, many Lake Street business owners feel optimistic yet anxious about rebuilding seven months after unrest erupted in the wake of George Floyd’s killing. Amaya’s first location, which she plans to keep after the Lyn-Lake location opens, was among many businesses that suffered damage and looting. And Amaya was among many affected businesses who received money from insurance and the Lake Street Council, a nonprofit that supports business vitality along Lake Street, allowing her to purchase new restaurant equipment. She was also among many businesses receiving in-kind help, which for her included working with a broker to find space for her restaurant’s second location.
Work Sample 2 Description
Kyle Rusness travels between St. Paul and Detroit Lakes to see family. Rusness is a chef who uses the Amtrak “Empire Builder” line because it works with his schedule.

“It’s like a commute; I can sleep on the train and be ready for work in the morning,” he said on a train heading to the Twin Cities on a recent Tuesday morning. Rusness works at Afro Deli near Union Depot.

He’s planning another trip to Detroit Lakes in October. But with Amtrak reducing service nationwide soon, Rusness isn’t sure what to do. Citing collapsing ridership due to COVID-19, Amtrak plans to reduce service on long-distance trains to save $150 million. This will include a sharp reduction for the Empire Builder, which goes between Chicago and the Pacific Northwest, with stops in Detroit Lakes, Staples, St. Cloud, St. Paul, Red Wing and Winona.
Work Sample 3 Description
Work Sample 3