Melissa is originally from Sturgis, South Dakota, but grew up in Brainerd, Minnesota. After she graduated from law school in 2001, she served as the law clerk to the Honorable David Gilbertson, Chief Justice of the South Dakota Supreme Court. Melissa joined Bantz, Gosch & Cremer, LLC, in 2002, where she is a trained/court-approved mediator and practices predominantly in the areas of family law and general civil litigation. Melissa is an avid reader, an active member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church, and enjoys traveling with her family. Melissa is also a veteran, with 14 years of service in the South Dakota Army National Guard. Melissa and her husband, Alan, a professor at Northern State University, have five children and reside in Aberdeen.