Meet the DGVE law Team
Danielle G. Van Ess Attorney & Counselor at Law
Attorney Danielle G. Van Ess founded DGVE law out of her home in Hingham in September of 2008 with a vision for a new kind of law firm based on a philosophy of compassionately providing high quality, holistic legal services in a friendly and relaxed manner, in a comfortable setting, and in an environmentally conscientious way.
Danielle enjoys the privilege of working with people of all ages, in all stages of life, from all types of families, through enthusiastic referrals from clients and professional colleagues to their friends, family members, and clients.
As a wife and the mother of four daughters (currently spanning in age from early elementary school to high school) Danielle completely understands the time constraints and pressing legal needs of young families. With the experience she has from going through the estate planning process with her husband for their own family, Danielle is able to guide her clients with patience and compassion.
As a sister whose younger brother died way too soon, Danielle also knows the pain of loss of an immediate family member. She is able to use both her personal perspective and her professional experience to guide her clients through the process of wrapping up their loved one's final affairs.
At DGVE law, our mission is to provide exceptional client service while making the process of obtaining high quality, professional legal advice and counseling as quick and easy as possible. A natural teacher, Danielle strives to educate and empower all of her clients providing an uplifting and fulfilling experience throughout the process of working together.
Danielle enjoys the counseling that is so much a part of her law practice and wants her clients to feel comfortable contacting her with whatever questions or concerns they have. She is grateful for the lasting relationships she has developed with the client members of our extended DGVE law family who know they can turn to her for assistance whenever the need arises.
Originally from Swampscott on the North Shore, Danielle earned her Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) with honors from The George Washington University in Washington, DC. After earning her Juris Doctorate (J.D.) from Boston University School of Law in May of 2001, Danielle earned her license to and was sworn into the practice of law. She then spent 7 years working as a lawyer for national, nonprofit organizations. In 2007, Danielle decided to shift practice areas and pursue her dream of starting her own law firm.
A long time Officer and Director of the Massachusetts Forum of Estate Planning Attorneys, Danielle helps to design and contribute to continuing legal education programs for estate planning lawyers throughout Massachusetts and New England. Danielle is grateful for that extended network of collaborative practitioners, with whom she regularly shares ideas and best practices to better serve all our clients.
Danielle is also proud to serve on the Board of Directors of the Hingham Cemetery since 2019, contributing to the local arts scene through the Ames Chapel series and helping to preserve the unique history of that beautiful, living space we are fortunate to have just a block from our offices on South Street in downtown Hingham Square. Danielle also takes solace there in visiting the final resting place of her brother and a dear friend also gone way too soon.
Amber supports Danielle in the delivery of professional legal services for all our clients. Following clients’ meetings with Danielle, Amber is responsible for the initial drafting of clients’ estate planning legal documents and court filings. She assists Danielle in advising clients regarding the practical use of their or their loved one’s legal documents and helps Danielle guide clients through the probate and trust and estate administration processes. Amber is also a Notary Public.
A lifelong resident of Plymouth, Massachusetts, Amber earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice from Plymouth State University (New Hampshire), studying one year abroad at American College in Dublin, Ireland. Prior to joining DGVE law in the Summer of 2019, she worked for another local law firm learning about estate planning, real estate, probate, and trust and estate administration.
401Ks & 529s & life insurance & brokerage & bank accounts, & RSUs, oh my! We are looking for our new resident number-cruncher to help our clients organize all their financial information so if the the family CFO isn't able to keep up with those responsibilities, other family members can step in to help.
Once we're all on the same page with what's involved, our next step is to make sure that all our clients' assets are owned or designated payable upon death the right ways to that the family has access to what they need at all times, without delays or worries, and that our clients' legal documents work in practice the way our clients intend.
It's a big and important job and our Asset Coordinator helps make it so much easier by working closely with our attorney, clients, and their other trusted professional advisors, especially their financial advisors, insurance agents, and accountants, as applicable.
Do you know someone who would be perfect for this position in our firm? Click here for the job posting.
Client Services Coordinator
Rachel serves as DGVE law’s Client Services Coordinator, managing all client intake, appointment scheduling, and follow-up, as well as matter management to ensure an easy and pleasant (if not downright enjoyable!) client experience working with us from start to finish. Rachel is at the hub of our firm, serving as our clients’ central point of contact for everything related to sharing and managing the flow of electronic and hard copy paperwork, appointment scheduling for our entire team, responding to general questions, providing follow up information throughout the process of working with us, and connecting our clients, trusted professional contacts, as well as our community, with the appropriate member of our team.
Rachel earned her Bachelor of Social Work from Salem State University’s School of Social Work and her Associate’s Degree in Human Services from Middlesex Community College. Prior to joining the DGVE law team, Rachel worked as a Legal Administrative Assistant for an estate planning, probate, and elder law firm in Massachusetts. She moved from the ‘burbs and college to Boston, just in time for COVID-19, so once this pandemic passes, Rachel has some serious exploring of local restaurants,
arts, and culture to do.
Cristina Martínez Rodríguez
Community Outreach Coordinator
Cristina serves as DGVE law’s Community Outreach Coordinator and is primarily responsible for organizing, scheduling, managing, and tracking the firm’s private and public educational offerings, programs, and materials, including webinars and workshops for other professionals, our clients, their families and friends, and the public. Cristina also manages all requests for community sponsorships and donation requests for the firm. Cristina helps Danielle and DGVE law share valuable information and keep in touch via our social media channels and our website, ensuring that even as the firm grows, our voice remains authentic and consistent, and that our close relationships with our circle of trusted professional advisors and our extended client family, remain intimate and connected.
Born and raised in Mexico, Cristina earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Fashion and Textile Design from Universidad de Monterrey’s CRGS Art School, with a minor in Fashion Marketing and High Fashion. Although DGVE law is certainly fashionable, clearly it’s a leap from Cristina’s past experiences, including an advertisement studio, a sewing workshop, and an international design summer camp in the French countryside. Yet Cristina shares the vision Danielle has for the firm and is excited to help share that bright vision with you.
Legal Innovation and Technology Assistant
A lifelong resident of Hingham, Jayden is currently a rising Senior attending the NuVu Studio in Cambridge, Massachusetts, a technological design and entrepreneurial innovation program through Beaver Country Day School. Through that program, Jayden developed a burgeoning interest in businesses serving their local communities. Jayden offered their services to DGVE law at just the right time! Combining our small, local, community-oriented business’ need for assistance on some behind the scenes projects with their skills and enthusiasm created a mutually beneficial opportunity for all of us. Having only joined the DGVE law team in the Spring of 2021, Jayden has already contributed to some exciting internal developments within the firm and they are busy working on a couple more. Stay tuned for more improvements they help us implement!