The Trusts and Estates Consortium was created in the fall of 2005 by a group of 40 Boston-based trusts and estates professionals seeking to discuss new developments in their field, network, and share experiences. Since then, the group, also known as “TEC,” has grown to over 200 members across Massachusetts. The Consortium now boasts a dynamic lineup of speakers at least every two months, including past speakers Natalie Choate and Steve Akers, on a variety of pertinent topics. In addition, TEC allows its members to post questions, referral needs, and job opportunities to the membership, thus being able to benefit from the experience of the group. Finally, the Consortium offers networking events throughout the year that allow the members to get to know each other in a relaxed setting.
Board of Directors and Officers
Liza M. Connelly is the President and a Director of the Trusts and Estates Consortium. She is a Trust Officer in the Wealth Management and Trust department of Boston Private Bank & Trust, where she focuses on trust services for clients, trust administration and fiduciary oversight. Liza also has a niche area of practice of pet trust planning and estate planning issues relating to companion animals. Liza worked extensively on the Massachusetts pet trust statute in 2010-2011, which has since been incorporated in the Massachusetts Uniform Trust Code.
Liza is an active member and has served on various committees for the Boston Estate Planning Council. She has also given presentations at the Boston Bar Association and MCLE on pet trusts and planning for companion animals and is Vice President of the Animal Law Practice Group of the Massachusetts Bar Association.
Liza is actively involved the community as a Member of Board of Overseers at the MSPCA, a member of the Alumni Council of Dedham Country Day School; and a volunteer pie seller every fall for Community Servings (food delivery program for people with critical illnesses who cannot leave their homes).
Liza received her J.D. from Suffolk University and LL.M. in Taxation from Boston University, and her B.A. from Miami University. Prior to law school, Liza worked in the global custody and financial services industry in Boston and in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
Liza and her husband Paul live in Brookline and enjoy travelling to Europe and Kenya. Liza is also an avid tennis player and runner.
Boston Private Bank & Trust Company
Wealth Management & Trust
Ten Post Office Square
Boston, MA 02109
Laurin Johnson graduated cum laude from Suffolk University Law School in 2009. Laurin then attended Georgetown University Law Center and earned an LL.M. in Taxation, a Certificate in Estate Planning, and graduated with distinction.
Laurin began practicing in 2011, and her practice has concentrated on estate planning, trust and estate administration, and charitable planned giving. Laurin is currently Of Counsel at Tempus Fugit Law LLC, where she counsels small businesses, families, and individuals throughout New England. She helps clients with matters related to trusts of all types, guardianships, gift taxes, and other estate tax and planning strategies.
Laurin is an avid horseback rider, a sport in which she has participated in for most of her life. She is recognized as a Grand Champion and World Champion rider, winning many equestrian awards including: World Champion and Grand National Champion in 2012, Reserve Grand National Champion in 2010, 3rd in the World in 2010, the 2010 New England Regional Champion, and was the Reserve World Champion and Grand National Champion in 2005.
Tempus Fugit Law LLC
183 State Street, Floor 2
Boston, MA 02109
Josh Miller is a managing director and senior wealth strategist in Atlantic Trust’s Boston office. Josh has more than 11 years of industry experience, counseling high net worth individuals, corporate executives, closely held business owners and multinationals on sophisticated estate plan designs and strategies. He works directly with clients and their advisors to develop and implement charitable, estate and wealth transfer and management planning as part of Atlantic Trust’s integrated wealth management process. Prior to joining the firm, Josh was a senior relationship manager and wealth strategist for BNY Mellon Wealth Management, where he worked with business owners and high net worth individuals throughout the country advising them and their families on investment management and various areas of wealth planning. Previously, he practiced at the law firm of Holland & Knight. Josh received his Juris Doctor degree from Suffolk University Law School and graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts from State University of New York at Oswego. He also holds the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification. He serves on several boards including the Boston Estate Planning Council, the Arts & Business Council of Boston, and the Rozalia Project for a Clean Ocean.
Managing Director, Senior Wealth Strategist
Atlantic Trust Private Wealth Management
Nikki Marie Oliveira is a Trusts & Estates Attorney at Bass, Doherty & Finks, P.C. Her practice focuses on sophisticated estate and tax planning, probate administration, Medicaid planning, special needs planning, as well as delicate situations requiring guardianships and conservatorships. Nikki guides clients in achieving their estate and tax planning goals by tailoring individualized plans to fit each client’s unique situation. Nikki also counsels families, personal representatives, trustees and beneficiaries in connection with the proper administration of estates and trusts. Nikki is the author of Chapter 13 of Estate Planning Law and Taxation – Planning for Incapacity and Financing Long-Term Care, and a contributing author of The Elder Law Forms Manual. Nikki was named as a Rising Star by Super Lawyers in 2015 and 2016. Nikki earned her LL.M. in Taxation from Boston University School of Law, her J.D. from New England School of Law and her B.S. in Mathematics, magna cum laude, from Roger Williams University. She is admitted to the Massachusetts and Florida Bars.
Bass, Doherty & Finks, P.C.
40 Soldiers Field Place
Boston, MA 02135-1104
Allison Whitmore is an attorney at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP and focuses her practice on estate planning, trust and estate administration, estate and gift taxation, and business succession planning. She works with individuals and families to create sophisticated estate plans and implement wealth transfer techniques. Allison also advises clients, including trustees and Personal Representatives, on complex estate and trust administration.
Allison is an active member of the trusts and estates community, as she has served on various committees for the Boston Estate Planning Council and Boston Bar Association, Trusts & Estates Section. Allison received her J.D. from New England School of Law and her B.A. from the University of New Hampshire.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
One Federal Street
Boston, MA 02110-1726
Founder & Past President
Sara A. Wells founded the Trusts and Estates Consortium in 2005, and served as its President until 2015. Sara, a Partner at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP, devotes her practice to estate planning, estate and trust administration, tax planning, and business succession planning. Sara assists clients in the creation of their estate plans, including establishing various irrevocable trusts to help clients make tax-efficient transfers to family members. She also administers estates, including the preparation of probate court documents and estate tax returns, and advises Personal Representatives on their fiduciary duties. Sara is a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, an Accredited Estate Planner of the National Association of Estate Planners and Councils, a Massachusetts Super Lawyer, a “Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly” 2015 Top Woman of Law, and the Founder of the Trusts and Estates Consortium. Sara has her B.S. in Economics from the University of Florida, her J.D. and LL.M in Taxation from Boston University, and is licensed in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and New York.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
One Federal Street
Boston, MA 02110
Elizabeth Volney is an associate at Mendel & Associates, LLC in Waltham, Massachusetts where she focuses her practice in estate planning, estate taxation planning, long-term care planning and estate administration. Liz was involved in editing the 2012 and 2016 editions of Drafting Estate Plans, published by Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE), and has also lectured on drafting estate plan documents for MCLE and for the Greater Lynn Bar Association. Liz graduated from Boston College in 2006 with a B.A. in Communication and from Northeastern University School of Law in 2011.
Mendel & Associates, LLC
281 Winter Street, Suite 310
Waltham, Massachusetts 02451
(781) 642-9599 x101
Patricia Weisgerber joined M. Robinson & Company in August 2014 as a Tax Associate. Her practice focuses on federal, state and international tax law. Prior to pursuing a career in tax law, Patricia worked in the financial services industry for more than twenty years. This experience included providing services and expertise to institutional and high-net worth clients.
Patricia graduated from Suffolk University Law School with a concentration in Business and Financial Services Law with Distinction. She was a recipient of the Rappaport Center’s Consumer Law Fellowship and president of the Women’s Law Association in her third year. Patricia received her LL.M. in Taxation from Boston University School of Law.
In addition to her prior professional experiences, Patricia has contributed to the greater Boston community by volunteering with the Children’s Trust, the Career Collaborative, the Labouré Center of South Boston, and the City of Boston’s Earned Income Tax Credit Program. Currently, Patricia is a member of the Boston Bar Association’s International Law Committee and serves on the Alumni Board for Suffolk University Law School.
Patricia is admitted to practice law in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and before the United States Tax Court.
M. Robinson & Company
160 Federal Street, 6th Floor
Boston, MA 02110
Pro Bono Chair
Jennifer Civitella Hilario works with families and individuals to develop creative estate planning strategies customized to meet her clients’ specific needs. Her approach is to understand each client’s unique goals and objectives and to develop an appropriate estate plan, often through tax-sensitive strategies. Jennifer’s estate planning practice also includes complex gifting strategies, charitable planning, estate and trust administration, advice to fiduciaries, and special needs planning. Ancillary to estate planning, Jennifer serves as an advisor to private foundations on governance and compliance matters. She practices before the IRS and has successfully obtained Private Letter Rulings on behalf of closely-held
Jennifer has practiced as an estate and tax planning attorney since 2003. Prior to starting her own firm, Jennifer was a partner at a Boston business law firm that provided comprehensive legal services to closely-held businesses and their owners.
Jennifer received her undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, from Rosemont College in 2000. She is a 2003 graduate of Boston College Law School and received the Boston College Graduate School Association Award for Outstanding Community Service. After receiving her J.D., Jennifer attained an LL.M. from Boston University’s Graduate Tax Program in 2006, graduating with her class’s highest cumulative GPA.
Jennifer is an active member of the Boston Estate Planning Counsel, having served on its Young Professionals Committee (2009-2010), its Sponsorship Committee (2010-2011) and its Programs Committee (2011-2012). She is also an active member of the Boston Bar Association, for the BBA’s Trust & Estate’s Committee, having served as a co-chair of the Practice Fundamentals Subcommittee (2012-2014) and a co-chair of the Communications Subcommittee (2015-2016). Jennifer served on The Boston Foundation’s Professional Advisor Network from 2009 until 2011. She served as a volunteer attorney with Shelter Legal Services Foundation Inc. (SLSF) from 2003 until 2011 and served as a board member of SLSF from 2009 through 2011.
Attorney At Law
111 Rice Street
Cambridge, MA 02140
Katelin Kalal is a Vice President and Private Client Advisor with U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management in Boston. Katelin works closely with successful individuals and families to simplify the complexities of significant wealth by developing integrated wealth strategies in three key areas: investment management, credit and banking, and wealth planning. She builds and leads a team of U.S. Trust specialists around each client, selecting a portfolio manager, wealth strategist, private client manager and trust officer.
Katelin serves as a compassionate and trustworthy resource for clients by understanding their unique needs and goals to provide them with the resources they need to make sound financial decisions. She spearheads in-depth analysis of a client’s family, business, and philanthropic priorities, leveraging the vast resources and intellectual capital of U.S. Trust. Katelin and her team work with business owners, executives and multi-generational families to match personalized strategies with their investment, estate and business succession planning needs while incorporating tax considerations. She also provides ongoing advice to clients and their family members, responding to changing market conditions, personal circumstances and significant life events.
Prior to joining U.S. Trust in 2014, Katelin spent seven years with BNY Wealth Management. She earned her B.B.A. Cum Laude from the Isenberg School of Management at UMASS Amherst. Katelin has been actively involved with Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. She’s served on the Marathon Challenge Board and ran the Boston Marathon for Dana-Farber five times. Currently, Katelin sits on the Outreach Committee for the Dana-Farber Leadership Council. She also supports Rodman for Kids and sits on the Celebration for Kids Committee.
Vice President, Private Client Advisor
U.S. Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management
100 Federal Street, 11th Floor
Boston, MA 02110
Rachel Ziegler is an attorney at the Kaiser Law Group in Wellesley, Massachusetts. Rachel’s practice focuses on estate planning and estate administration. She enjoys working closely with clients and their families to design an estate plan that meets their objectives, simplifies the transfer of assets upon death, and minimizes taxes. In this role, she counsels clients about estate, gift, generation-skipping, and income taxes, as well as charitable gifts and asset protection. Rachel also advises small business owners in forming entities and planning for succession. She also represents fiduciaries in administering estates and trusts, including the preparation of probate documents and estate tax returns. Rachel received a A.B., magna cum laude with honors, from Harvard College. She received a J.D., magna cum laude, and a Masters in Public Health from The University of Michigan. Rachel joined the Kaiser Law Group in January 2008. Prior to that time, she worked as an associate in the health care and corporate departments at a large Boston law firm. In 2003 and 2004, Rachel served as a law clerk to The Honorable T.S. Ellis III in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Division.
Kaiser Law Group
65 William Street, Suite 350
Wellesley, MA 02481
Ann Hetherwick (“Hether”) Cahill is an Associate in the Private Client Group at Burns & Levinson LLP, where she focuses on all aspects of estate and trust litigation, guardianships and conservatorships, elder financial exploitation, and family law. Before entering private practice, she clerked for the Honorable Joseph A. Trainor of the Massachusetts Appeals Court. Hether received her J.D. from Suffolk University Law School and her B.A. from Skidmore College. She is the Book Review Editor of the Massachusetts Law Review and a participant in the 2016-2017 Boston Chamber of Commerce’s Women’s Leadership Program.
Burns & Levinson LLP
125 Summer Street | Boston MA 02110
Caitlin Glynn is an associate at Rackemann, Sawyer and Brewster, where her practice focuses on the areas of estate planning, estate and trust administration and the preparation of tax returns for fiduciaries, trusts and estates. She works with individuals and families to achieve their unique planning and wealth transfer goals. Caitlin is a double eagle, receiving her undergraduate degree and J.D. from Boston College, both cum laude. She is an avid runner and can often be found on long runs in Cambridge and Boston. A longtime volunteer with Big Sister of Association of Greater Boston, she is currently a committed member on their Young Professional Board. She also enjoys spending weekends in the summer with her family in Falmouth on Cape Cod.
Rackemann, Sawyer & Brewster
160 Federal Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02110
(617) 951- 1147
Women’s Forum Chair
Nicole A. Hostettler is an associate at Bass, Doherty & Finks, P.C. and focuses her practice on estate planning and estate administration. She provides guidance to clients on crafting estate plans that maximize the tax efficient transfer of wealth to future generations while at the same time addressing the needs of each individual’s unique circumstances. She is also experienced in preparing the necessary estate and gift tax returns. Nicole earned her LL.M. in taxation from the Graduate Tax Program at Boston University School of Law and her J.D. from Suffolk University Law School where she served as content editor of the Journal of High Technology Law. Nicole also holds a B.A. from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in English Literature. She is licensed to practice law in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Bass, Doherty & Finks, P.C.
40 Soldiers Field Place
Boston, MA 02135-1104