JULIE BOBZIEN, Executive Director
Ms. Bobzien has been with VARN since 2013, and has been the Executive Director since 2015. She previously held the role of Finance & Grants Manager. She is a member of Nevada’s Access to Justice Commission and Treasurer of the Board of Directors of the Nevada Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence (NCEDSV).
Before coming to VARN, she spent ten years working in the political and legislative arena for campaign organizations and elected officials. In particular, for four years, she held the position of District Director for the Nevada Senate Majority Leader and managed all aspects of the district office in southern Nevada.
Ms. Bobzien has a Master of Social Work degree from Washington University in St. Louis and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Child Psychology from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. In her spare time she loves to read, travel, and spend time with her husband, daughter, son, and two stepsons. Email Julie Bobzien.
VICTORIA S. MENDOZA, Esq., Managing Attorney/Pro Bono Coordinator
Ms. Mendoza received her undergraduate degree from the University of San Francisco and her law degree from the University of Notre Dame. She has been licensed to practice law in the state of Nevada and the state of California. (Her California license is currently inactive.) She has served as a law clerk for the Second Judicial District Court and a staff attorney for the Nevada Supreme Court.
Prior to joining VARN, Ms. Mendoza practiced commercial litigation, bankruptcy, family and probate law with the Hale Lane law firm (now known as, Holland and Hart), the Silverman and Decaria law firm, and her own law firm, Victoria S. Mendoza, Esq. Ltd. Ms Mendoza has also served on many non-profit boards, such as, the Food Bank of Northern Nevada, Nevada Hispanic Services, Step 2, the Nevada Women’s Fund, and Pack Paws. She is a past president of Northern Nevada Women Lawyers Association, and a former board member of the Board of Governors for Nevada Trial Lawyers. She is also a member of Soroptimist International of Truckee Meadows.
She has been named a Women of Achievement by the Nevada Women’s Fund and been the recipient of several Pro Bono awards for her work with Washoe County Senior Law Project and Washoe County Law Library’s Lawyer in the Library. Besides her legal and community work, Ms. Mendoza has participated in the Team in Training Program with the Leukemia Society of America by running marathons, riding century bike rides, and completing triathlons while raising thousands of dollars for the Leukemia Society. For her efforts with the Leukemia Society, she has been named a Leukemia Society “Rock Star” and a winner of the Leukemia Society “Triple Crown”. Email Victoria Mendoza.
RAQUEL FULGHUM, Esq., Staff Attorney
Raquel Fulghum has been a staff attorney with VARN since June 2018. She was born and raised in Northern Nevada and graduated from Carson High School in 2005. Afterwards, she attended the University of Nevada Reno, where she received her Bachelors of Arts in Criminal Justice – Pre Law with a minor in Philosophy in 2010. After graduating from UNR, she took some time off to help in her family’s business before going to law school. In 2014, she was accepted into law school at the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. Raquel received her J.D. from McGeorge in 2017.
Raquel is a member of the Nevada Justice Association, the First Judicial District Bar Association, the Family Law Section of the State Bar of Nevada, and the Northern Nevada Women Lawyers Association.
When Raquel is not working at VARN or is at court with clients, Raquel likes to spend time with her fiancé Ryan. She enjoys camping, watching baseball, and taking care of her two crazy pups, Lincoln and Liberty. Email Raquel Fulghum.
George F. McNally was born August 22, 1946, in Dallas Texas, a town in north Texas that has a professional football team that nobody likes. George attended parochial and Jesuit High School in Dallas, graduating in 1964.
After graduation George attended The University of Saint Thomas, starting in the fall 1964. In 1966 George entered into the United States Marine Corps.
George reentered The University of Saint Thomas, receiving a Bachelor’s degree in 1972. George started his legal career upon entering South Texas College of Law, in the fall of 1974, receiving his Juris Doctorate in 1997.
George began his legal career on the Gulf Coast of Texas. He worked as an assistant city attorney for Galveston, Texas. He then moved to the Galveston County District Attorney’s office, as a prosecutor.
George moved to northern Nevada in 1981. He worked as a briefing attorney with the Nevada State Public Defenders office in Carson City, Nevada, from 1981 to 1984. He then went to work with Riley Beckett, Esq. in Carson City, Nevada, from 1984 to 1986. The firm predominately handled subrogation cases for the State Industrial Insurance System.
In 1986 George went into private practice. His practice consisted of plaintiffs” personal injury; Workers Compensation; Medical Negligence; Insurance Bad Faith; Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect; and Products Liability, predominately defective air bags, and rollovers.
George is a member of the State Bar of Texas, the State Bar of Nevada. He is admitted to numerous state and federal courts. George is also a member of the Texas Trial Lawyers Association; the Nevada Justice Association, formerly the Nevada Trial Lawyers Association, past president 1993 to 1994, and the American Justice Association, formerly the Association of Trial Lawyers of America.
George started with Volunteer Attorneys for Rural Nevadans in September, 2018. Email George McNally.
KAREN STONER, Legal Assistant
KAREN STONER is a legal assistant at VARN. She began with VARN in 2017. She has many years of legal experience in many areas of the law. She states that her experience working at VARN has been a highlight of her professional career.
Karen is the mother of four adult children, who are Native Nevadans. Her hobbies include reading, crafting, and taking extended education courses. Email Karen Stoner.
Margarita Bautista recently joined VARN on May 24, 2019. She comes to VARN with an array of experience in different fields ranging from Food Prep to Legal Assistant. She has worked for various positions in various fields and has a great knowledge of customer service.
She received her Associate of Arts from Western Nevada College in 2013 and her High School Diploma from Carson High in 2011. She is fluent in English and Spanish. In the future, she hopes to become certified with the Board of Immigration Appeals so that she can assist clients who need to receive assistance with their immigration cases.
On her time off, you will find Margarita traveling with her 2 children and husband around the Northwest, getting to know the states of California and Washington and showing off the state of Oregon to her family. If not traveling, you can still find her with her family fishing, swimming, hiking, barbecuing or on the trampoline at home. Email Margarita Bautista.
REBECCA SMOKEY, Senior Legal Advocate & Caseworker
Rebecca Smokey is the Senior Legal advocate & caseworker who interviews clients for legal services, gathers documentation and provides summaries to attorneys for case consideration. Rebecca is knowledgeable in the dynamics of domestic violence providing direct service, case management, crisis intervention, lethality assessments, safety planning , and information and referrals to victims and families. Rebecca also provides outreach services to social service and domestic violence agencies, courts, victim witness specialists, and is a representative of the Partnership of Community Resources. Rebecca served on the Nevada Council for Prevention of Domestic Violence with the Attorney General, Domestic Violence Task Force Teams, Native American Women’s Coalition, Tribal Representative for the Washoe Tribe for 14 yrs, and served as the chair of the Burial Committee for the past 7 yrs. Rebecca is a Native Nevadan and grandmother of 4 who is active in their sporting events, community and tribal events and enjoys camping, swimming, walking, volleyball and being around family & friends. Email Becky Smokey.
GLORIA GUARINO, Receptionist
Gloria joined VARN in March of 2018 as a part time Receptionist. She works at VARN through the AARP ‘s Senior Community Service Employment Program, and has been with AARP since 2014. Prior to working at VARN, Gloria worked for RSVP. Gloria was raised in California until she moved to Nevada in 1981. She was self-employed at an excavation & trucking company from 1979 to 1999. She worked at Western Nevada College from 1999 to 2011 as both a Work Study and a Clerical Trainee. Gloria has 2 daughters and 8 grandchildren, and she loves to spend as much time as possible with them. Gloria has just found her biological family on her mother’s side, which has been a very exciting journey! Gloria loves the ocean and warm, sunny weather. She loves riding motorcycles and horses, local events, and music festivals. Email Gloria Guarino.