Staff

George Combs – General Manager

Since he came to his position in 2015, George Combs has dedicated himself to the year-round role as the General Manager of the fourth largest rodeo in North America. His job involves coordinating countless moving pieces to ensure the success of this historic ten-day event. As a relatively new addition to the Reno Rodeo team, George brought a wealth of business and rodeo experience from his previous home in Caldwell, Idaho. At the time of their move, George and his lovely wife, Shannon, had been living in Idaho for 52 years. He jokingly explains that it took them that long to “grow their wings.”

The couple is settled now with absolutely no regrets of making Northern Nevada their new home. Their daughter and her family, including three grandchildren, remain back in Idaho. Happily, their son and daughter-in-law have recently relocated to Reno. October 2018 brought a fourth grandchild – a son for Kyle and Lindsey.

George enjoys watching the rodeo events, noting steer wrestling as his favorite, but engaging with the fans at the end of each night is what he looks forward to the most. He makes a habit of standing by the gate and chatting with visitors as they exit. He loves to see their smiles and personally thank them for attending. For George, knowing he has helped to deliver a fun, affordable and family-oriented experience is one of the most rewarding parts of his job.

Denise Reams – Bookkeeper

As the bookkeeper for the association, Denise Reams works day in and day out supporting the financial activities of the Reno Rodeo. Originally a “California Girl,” she grew up in Ventura and relocated to Reno with her husband three years ago. They had fallen in love with the Reno-Tahoe area during visits in the past and always imagined making it a permanent home.

This year will mark Denise’s fourth rodeo, and she is looking forward to it, as she is more comfortable with the entire experience. For Denise, seeing the rodeo event come together in June is a highlight of her work for the association. She is inspired by the passion of everyone involved, including the hundreds of volunteers who give of their time each year. She also loves seeing the local community get excited for the event, enjoying the sense of expectation and anticipation that begins to emerge long before the official start.

Working on rodeo activities year-round does not seem to reduce her enjoyment of the event. Her favorite part of attending the rodeo is Patriot Night, the night when all rodeo participants and spectators alike can simultaneously demonstrate their devotion to our country, along with their passion for the western legacy. “It’s so awesome to see how much it means to everyone,” she explains. “It makes you feel good all over!”

Mikayla Williams – Administrative Assistant

As a seventh generation Nevadan, Mikayla was born and has lived in Reno for twenty-six years and has always loved the Reno Rodeo. Her family has been involved with the Reno Rodeo all the way back to her great grandmother volunteering, and now Mikayla is continuing the tradition.

Mikayla joined the Reno Rodeo Family in 2018. She is an Administrative Assistant, and she is the first smiling face you will see walking into the office. Her duties in the office include answering questions, answering the phone and helping wherever is needed.

Mikayla’s personal rodeo experience is that it doesn’t matter what age you are, you will fall in love with the Reno Rodeo. She also sees how much of the rodeo is just one big happy family and everyone has been very welcoming to her. She has appreciated all the love and support she has gotten while being with the rodeo. Mikayla would like to thank her Coworkers and the Rodeo Family for being there through the tough times as well as the great times. Let’s see what 2022 has in store for us and Keep It Old School!

Chanel Atoa – Ticket Coordinator 

Chanel (like the perfume) Atoa is from the Big Island. She grew up in Kona, Hawaii, and after completing high school attending the University of Hawaii before transferring to the University of Nevada to complete her degree. Chanel worked for the university’s athletic ticketing department for close to 30 years before accepting a position at the Reno Rodeo office as an Administrative Assistant and to help start our ticket sales operation.

One of the first rodeos Chanel attended was in Hawaii, where she became a big fan of the events, the people involved, and the level of competition.

She enjoys the hustle and bustle and excitement generated in the office as the rodeo approaches. Chanel feels so welcome and states, “It’s like I’m part of the family here. It’s so amazing to me.”

A little-known fact we should all remember is that Chanel and General Manager George share the same birthdate!!

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