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Lisa R. Shellenberger is a Managing Partner at Setter Roche Smith & Shellenberger, LLC, and she is the division lead for the firm’s family law and juvenile law team. Lisa is an award-winning litigator who is regarded as one of the leading family law attorneys in the state of Colorado. She has successfully tried hundreds of cases throughout her career, and as a result, her courtroom litigation skills are exceptional. She also frequently teaches Continuing Legal Education courses to other attorneys and judges throughout the year. Exemplary of her trial skills, Lisa has been awarded the Super Lawyers Rising Star award in the area of family law for 7 years running, from 2017-2023. Lisa has also been recognized as the Nation’s Top One Percent by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel. Additionally, from 2017-2022, Lisa has been named as a Top 10 Attorney in Colorado the area of family law by the American Institute of Family Law Attorneys.
Lisa is highly skilled in representing clients in divorce actions, child custody cases, adoption proceedings, dependency & neglect cases, guardianship actions, maternity and paternity actions, modifications of child support and parenting time, grandparent visitation actions, and third party allocation of parental responsibilities cases. Because of Lisa’s extensive experience and role as division lead, her representative case-types are typically the high-conflict child custody matters, complex high-asset divorce actions that often involve Marital Agreements, and high-consequence child abuse cases investigated or filed by the Department of Human Services.
In addition to family law and juvenile law practice, Lisa also engages in work in the field of tribal law. She was appointed to the bench in January, 2018, to serve as an Appellate Judge for the Havasupai Court of Appeals in Supai, Arizona. Because her appointment to the bench is part-time, she still practices both in tribal courts throughout the West and in Colorado state district courts in the front-range area.
Lisa is also extremely involved in matters related to the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) in Colorado. She is regarded as a leading specialist in the field of ICWA. ICWA often is applied in many dependency & neglect cases, adoption actions, guardianship actions, and some APR actions involving Indian children. Lisa is one of the most well-versed attorneys that actively represents clients in ICWA cases, and she is also often retained as a qualified expert witness (QEW) to evaluate and provide an expert opinion and report to the Court in ICWA cases. Lisa further serves on numerous ICWA judiciary committees for many state judicial districts in the front range, and she also is frequently asked to teach Continuing Legal Education (CLE) courses to fellow attorneys and judges on the topic of ICWA and ICWA compliance. She is a member of multiple Rules drafting committees in which she drafts or otherwise works with the committees to revise the Colorado Rules of Civil Procedure.
Prior to coming on full-time with Setter Roche Smith & Shellenberger, LLC, Lisa served as a Clerk to Justice Nancy E. Rice at the Colorado Supreme Court. Lisa’s publications include: OPPOSING VIEWPOINTS: NATIVE AMERICANS, “The Reasoning for and Purpose of the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Cengage Learning, April 2012". Lisa’s legal work has been highlighted in numerous national news articles, including the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, and National Public Radio (NPR).
Lisa attended law school at the University of Colorado Law School in Boulder, Colorado. Lisa completed her undergraduate degree at Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri, with honors. Lisa is an Oklahoma Native, and she is a member of the Choctaw Nation.
Outside of work, Lisa is an outdoor and fitness enthusiast. She enjoys CrossFit, traveling, camping, equestrian horse jumping, mountain biking, dirt biking, scuba diving, and she plays in competitive women’s basketball league as well. She enjoys doing all of these activities with her husband, Kyle, and their two dogs, Moose and Millie.