Ben Donovan
Full Name
Benjamin Donovan
Portrayed by
First Appearance
Date of Birth
Manager of Operations of the Sunshine Center
San Diego, CA, USA
  ●   Sig. other: 
Alice (Former friend-with-benefits)

Benjamin Donovan, commonly known as Ben, is the sarcastic and cynical manager of operations of the Sunshine Center in San Diego, CA.


Not much is known about Ben's early life. In 2001, when Ben was 30-years-old, he was hired as the manager of operation of the Sunshine Center ("Employee of the Year"), and entered a strictly sexual relationship with his fellow co-worker, Alice. Though he was well-liked around the arena, Ben was an intimidating figure, once instructing the head of maintenance (whose name he forgot) to always respond with "yes." Despite his repelling attitude towards some, Ben was shown to give perks to his employees, most notably a suite. Though he seems to be a friend of Alonzo, Ben confessed to Alice that he hated him.

On his last night before his 40th birthday, Ben found Alice in her office, and the two had sex, though clarifying they are both seeing other people. They carried it over to Ben's apartment, though the very next morning, Ben snuck out of the house without Alice noticing.


Due to a large greetings on the arena scoreboard, planned by Heather, Ben's 40th birthday was known to all. Ben arrived at work to discover that the circus was performing that night, though the arena's floor was covered in ice from last night's hockey game, due to the broken hot water pump. While attempting to fix the situation, Ben received a message from Alice. The arena's owner, Crystal summoned Ben and instructed him to find her estranged son a job. With an elephant running wild, Crystal's son, Roman, proving to be a hard case of its own, and making sure Crystal's speech at a charity event is anything but racist, Alice breaks up with Ben, revealing she chose to move in with Alonzo, since Ben only thinks about himself. As the day goes on, Ben asks the circus' clowns to break the ice with fire axes, and manages to save Crystal's reputation after she tossed a kid at the armed clowns, which are revealed to be her biggest fear. Finally letting go of Alice, Ben decides to become a better person, and thanks a minor employee who wishes him a happy birthday, and asks for his name. Eventually, Ben and Alonzo encounter the elephant, yet do nothing but run away. ("Pilot")

On his 10-year anniversary as an employee of the Sunshine Center, Ben expected recognition from his fellow staff, though Crystal announced an Employee of the Year contest, with the prize being a golf cart. Ben, misled by Crystal to believe he was the winner no matter what, focused his attention on pleasing Eli Cutler, a heartthrob pop star who demanded a copy of the first season of Brothers and Sisters and a number of an attractive young girl. After Ben discovered that the contest's winner was Roman all along, Ben confronted Crystal. Learning that Eli refuses to go on stage and perform, Ben learned that Eli believes his music sucks. Reading from a list of songs on the wall, Ben expressed his fake love of Eli's songs, explaining that once in a while everyone needs someone to tell them they are doing a good job. Eli agreed to perform, and dedicated a song to Ben. After the show, Crystal thanked Ben for his service, claiming that he does his job so well, sometimes she forgets to thank him. At the parking lot, Ben found the burning golf cart, and believed it was Heather who was known for being a pyromaniac. Ben merely alerted security. ("Employee of the Year")