Attorney Profile

Kelsea E. Raether


Kelsea Raether joined Hobbs Straus as an associate in July 2017. She received her J.D. in December 2016, graduating with honors from the University of New Mexico School of Law. Her studies focused on environmental law and Federal Indian law and she received the Law and Indigenous Peoples Program Indian Law Certificate. Before law school, Kelsea graduated with honors from Michigan State University in 2011, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and a Certificate of Concentration in Museum Studies. Kelsea is admitted to practice law in New Mexico and is currently awaiting admission into the District of Columbia Bar.

During law school, Kelsea worked as a student attorney in the UNM Southwest Indian Law Clinic, where she represented low income Native clients in civil and criminal matters arising under international, federal, state, and tribal law. Through this opportunity she practiced in New Mexico state court and the tribal courts of Isleta Pueblo, Laguna Pueblo, and Zia Pueblo. She was elected to represent the first year class in the Native American Law Student Association and served as a tutor and teaching assistant for Introduction to Constitutional Law and Comparative Historical Legal Perspectives. Kelsea also received the CALI Award for the highest grade in her ethics class. Additionally, Kelsea was honored to assist Professor Kevin Washburn with research on the limited financial options available to Indian tribes for funding natural disaster preparedness and response activities.

Kelsea is excited to be in Washington, DC again, having spent two school semesters studying and working in the city. During fall 2016, she completed a full-time internship with the Environmental Protection Agency Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance in Washington, DC, analyzing and taking action on a variety of enforcement matters arising under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act. While at Michigan State, Kelsea interned full-time with the Department of Interior National NAGPRA Program, which implements the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1990. Through this experience she developed a passion for the policies and laws that pertain to cultural heritage protection and preservation, ultimately leading Kelsea to obtain her J.D.

Outside of the office, Kelsea loves to travel and experience new cultures. She has been to Europe several times and during law school spent the summer of 2015 studying international law abroad in Madrid, Spain. Kelsea is a devoted Michigan State sports fan and avid follower of college football. She also enjoys spending time relaxing on her family’s farm in Michigan.

Professional Organizations

Lawyers' Committee for Cultural Heritage Preservation
New Mexico Bar Association
American Bar Association


University of New Mexico School of Law, J.D. (cum laude), 2016
Michigan State University, B.A. (manga cum laude), 2011

Bar Admissions

New Mexico
District of Columbia