Meet Our Staff
Betsy Elsberry, Partner
Betsy Elsberry is a partner with Elsberry & Shively. Her practice areas focus on oil and gas, family law, and mediation. She has extensive experience in title examination, she handles oil and gas, real estate ligation, transactional, and curative matters for clients. As for family law, Betsy’s attention to detail and understanding of her clients’ needs allow her to help her clients make important decisions during difficult and emotional times in a timely and effective manner.
Betsy earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Management from the University of North Dakota, and she was a Summa Cum Laude Graduate. Betsy then attended the University of North Dakota School of Law, and she graduated with distinction. After law school, Betsy clerked for the Honorable Justice Carol Ronning Kapsner of the North Dakota Supreme Court.
Betsy and her husband Joe are both from Minot, North Dakota, and they have resided in Bismarck for over ten years. In their free time, they enjoy all that the Bismarck community and North Dakota have to offer.
Erica Shively, Partner
Erica Shively is a partner with Elsberry & Shively whose primary practice areas are criminal defense, adoption, and family law. Erica has represented hundreds of clients and has extensive experience in the courtroom. Erica’s portfolio of criminal work includes representation for charges from misdemeanor to felony level. Erica has a winning record on jury trials. In family work, Erica prides herself on attentiveness to her clients’ needs, knowledge of North Dakota law, and experience with judges in North Dakota.
Erica is a native of Pleasant Lake, North Dakota. She graduated from the University of North Dakota, cum laude with a B.A. in Communication in 2003. Erica graduated with distinction from the University of North Dakota Law School in 2008. Erica is the proud mother of a daughter. In her free time, Erica enjoys reading, gardening, knitting, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.
Chris Rausch, Attorney
Chris Rausch is an attorney with Elsberry & Shively whose primary practice areas are tribal, business, criminal, and family law. Chris graduated with distinction from the University of North Dakota – School of Law in 2008 as a member of the Order of the Coif and Order of the Barristers. Chris served as the law clerk for North Dakota Supreme Court Chief Justice Gerald VandeWalle from 2008-2009. He worked at the Vogel Law Firm in Bismarck, ND from 2009-2011, practicing in criminal law and family law. From 2011-2013, Chris served as Assistant In-House Attorney for the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, where he specialized in code and statute development/drafting and gaming law, and handled matters regarding employment, tax, education, government relations, historic preservation, criminal justice and lobbying.
Chris is a native of Bismarck. He is an avid writer and reader and enjoys bicycling, traveling, spending time with friends and family, and music.
Serena McCabe, Paralegal
Serena received her Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Studies and Bachelor of Art in Sociology from the University of North Dakota in 2010. She received her Paralegal Certificate from St. Cloud State University in 2013. Since 2011 she has been working in a law office setting as an administrative assistant, legal secretary, and paralegal. She has a diverse knowledge of both the criminal and civil processes. Serena also manages the day to day functions of Elsberry & Shively and serves as a great resource to our clients.
Dina Baird, Paralegal
Ondine “Dina” Baird received a BS in Chemistry from the University of Minnesota and worked as a food scientist for General Mills after college. She moved home to North Dakota in 2004 to run her own business and later began working in the legal field. Dina joined Elsberry & Shively in 2018 as an experienced paralegal and trained family law mediator. Her vast experience in oil and gas, real estate and probate work serves as an added benefit to our clients.
In her free time, she is a community activist, is a current and former board member of many local businesses. She is an appointed member of the municipal Parking Authority. Dina and her husband enjoy sour dough bread baking, gardening and visiting their daughter who is in college in Minnesota.
Alexys Walker, Legal Assistant
Alexys graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BS in Political Science from North Dakota State University in 2021, where she participated in constitutional law and judicial process classes, as well as studying international law and both global and public policy. She was a member of Pre-Law Club and Bison Ambassadors. Alexys assists our team and clients by drafting and filing documents with the court, managing schedules, preparing for trials, and carrying out many more important tasks . Gaining more knowledge and experience with the criminal and civil processes, she plans to continue her education by attending law school in the following years. When she’s out of the office, Alexys enjoys traveling, supporting the Bison, researching current events, and practicing her Spanish.
Quinn Harmon, Attorney
Quinn is an Attorney with Elsberry & Shively who primarily practices in the area of family law. Quinn graduated from the University of Mary with a B.S. in Public Policy. She then attended Mitchell Hamline School of Law in Saint Paul where she earned her Juris Doctorate. While in law school, Quinn spent many weekends volunteering at the Family Law Self Help Clinic where she grew her knowledge of family law. Quinn understands how difficult family law cases can be and prides herself on her ability to empathize with and advocate for her clients.
Quinn is from Minot, North Dakota, but has enjoyed establishing roots and becoming a part of the community in Bismarck. Quinn spends her free time chasing around her daughter. When she is not chasing around her daughter, Quinn enjoys attending concerts, traveling and spending time with friends and family.
Tessa Vaagen, Attorney
Tessa is an Attorney with Elsberry & Shively who primarily practices in the area of juvenile guardianships, adult guardianships, and family law. She is also a certified parenting investigator.
Tessa completed her undergraduate studies at the University of Mary, graduating magna cum laude with a B.S. in Social and Behavioral Sciences. Tessa obtained her legal education at the University of North Dakota, graduating magna cum laude. While in law school, Tessa competed in Moot Court, was Managing Editor for the Journal of Law and Interdisciplinary Studies, and received the Thomas O. Smith Memorial Scholarship. Tessa was also a Legal Intern for the Legislative Assembly during the 2015 Legislative Session.
Prior to joining Elsberry & Shively, Tessa was an assistant state’s attorney for over six years. That position provided her with extensive experience in the areas of criminal and juvenile law. It also gave her significant exposure to the courtroom, wherein she handled numerous appeals, jury trials, bench trials, and a large variety of hearings. Tessa is passionate about tying her previous experience with her family law and guardianship cases. She can walk her clients through those tough situations where multiple agencies may be involved with their case and give them some insight into how that process could affect their current situation.
Tessa was born and raised in Bismarck, North Dakota. In her off time, she enjoys reading, cross-stitching, and spending time with her family and wiener dog.