San Diego Family Mediation Center

Learn About Us

Rachel R. Vanni, Esq.

Who Is Rachel?

Like most young children, I wanted to be a lawyer when I grew up. Little did I know that the drama and heartache of litigation wasn’t a great fit. Looking back, I was born to mediate. Whenever there was a disagreement on the playground, I was always the first to call a quorum to sit down and negotiate. To my parent’s dismay, I would turn just about anything and everything into a negotiation. As I grew, I was I was drawn to helping people in challenging situations. In college, I was a guardian ad litem for children in protective custody. This was my first experience in helping families in a court setting and I was forever hooked. In law school, I was given the experience of multiple internships in the areas of domestic violence and dependency. My passion for helping families grew.

In 2016 I lost my husband to cancer and early 2017 I lost my three-year-old daughter to a rare disease. The grief I have experienced in my personal life has further motivated me to help be a light for those in the dark. Going through a divorce or custody matter creates a deep sense of loss. I always walk clients through the process in as much of a positive way as possible so they can begin anew with a solid foundation of self-love, trust, and respect for themselves and each other.

What I Want Our Clients to Know

If there is one thing I understand completely is starting over. For some, it may feel like a relief. For others, it may take the form of deep grief. It may be a bit of both and change depending on the day. Both as a mediator and in the office as the Director of Mediation Services, I promise to always act with kindness and empathy in your matter. My goal is to guide and inform clients and create a lasting agreement that is a win/win for both sides. I want our office to be a peaceful environment and refuge. I want everyone to feel comfortable, hopeful, and open to asking questions.

When I’m not in the office, you will find me on the mats at jiujitsu or at the CrossFit gym. I enjoy hiking out in the mountains, camping, and cooking. You may have met my dog, Recon, at the office. He’s a great co-worker and takes his job as the office therapy dog very seriously.