Five of our incredible MSJDN members are among the newly announced nominees for the 2018 Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouse of the Year. Join us in congratulating Stefany Buckley, Bobbie Collins, Kaiti Smith Dean, Tricia Petek, and Anna Blanch Rabe on their nominations highlighting their professional accomplishments and service to their communities. The first round of voting lasts for only until February 9th, so don’t wait!

Stefany Buckley: Stefany is a National Guard spouse and law student from Connecticut, who volunteers as the MSJDN Social Media Manager. She is also currently the president of the Quinnipiac University School of Law Military Law Society and uses her legal skills to serve veterans at the QUSL Veterans Law Clinic, helping with their disability claims and discharge upgrades. She previously served on the Mental Health Community Advisory Board at the West Haven VA as a Veterans Advocate and lent her skills to Habitat for Humanity and the Connecticut Innocence Project. Stefany was welcomed to military spouse life last year as she balanced law school, her work and volunteer duties, her wedding, and her husband’s mobilization to Texas to assist with the Hurricane Harvey recovery.

Bobbie Collins: Bobbie is a business and real estate litigator with Lewis Roca Rothgerber Chrisie LLP in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She is married to an Air Force Reservist and the mom of three.  Bobbie served as Pro Bono General Counsel to the Kirtland Spouses Clubs and was honored by the club with an educational scholarship in her name in recognition of her pro bono legal services.  In September 2017, she was appointed as the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division’s Liaison to the Committee on Legal Assistance to Military Personnel.  Bobbie is also the co-chair of MSJDN’s New Mexico state licensing team and spearheads a Military Spouse Club Project Team within MSJDN’s pro bono program to provide information and eventually, pro bono legal services, to military spouse clubs on military installations across the world regarding entity formation, governance, state, federal, installation, and operational requirements.  She was honored by MSJDN with the 2017 Volunteer Service Award.

Kaitlin Smith Dean: Kaitlin is a National Guard spouse living in Kentucky, where she hopes to one day run for Judge.  Kaitlin was an integral part of the successful MSJDN state licensing efforts in Kentucky.  A graduate of Baylor University and University of Kansas School of Law, she has a passion for innocence work.  She served as the Student Director of the Paul E. Wilson Project for Innocence and Post-Conviction Remedies Clinic. During her time with the Innocence Project, she authored a Motion to Compel DNA Testing on the Floyd Bledsoe case and had the privilege of walking alongside him as he stepped out of the Jefferson County District Courthouse in Oskaloosa, Kansas, as a free man.

Tricia Petek: Tricia is an Air Force spouse currently enjoying an overseas tour out of Stuttgart, Germany, where she volunteers with a spouses’ organization and the parent-teacher association at her son’s school.  She puts her talents as an attorney and leader to work serving those in need as well.  Tricia serves as the Pro Bono Director for MSJDN, supporting Gold Star families with legal needs through Justice for Military Families and overseeing other pro bono programs for the military community. Before relocating to Germany with her servicemember, she served as a Court Appointed Special Advocate for young children in dependency and neglect cases. She was previously recognized with the Florence World Memorial Award for demonstrating a commitment to the legal representation of low income people.

Anna Blanch Rabe: Anna is an Air Force spouse and veteran of the Australian Army.  She serves as the co-chair of the MSJDN New Mexico state licensing team and as the founding lead for the Hiring Our Heroes Military Spouse Professional Network at Holloman AFB. She was appointed to the Housing Authority Board by the Mayor of the City of Alamogordo in 2017 for a two-year term, serves on the Board of Directors of Thrive in Southern New Mexico, and is a member of the Rotary Club of White Sands.  Anna is also proud to serve as a key spouse mentor for 9ATKS. She was recently named the Air Combat Command nominee for the 2018 USAF Joan Orr Spouse of the Year.  Anna  is the Founder and CEO of Anna Blanch Rabe & Associates, a communications consultancy specializing in shaping and executing the communications strategies of law firms, social impact businesses and non-profits.

Since 2008, the Military Spouse Magazine has selected a Military Spouse of the Year. Nominations are accepted from the public and the winner is chosen through online voting and a judges’ panel. The first of three voting rounds occurs over just a few days in February. Voting culminates with the announcement of the Military Spouse of the Year at an awards luncheon in D.C. in the spring.

The first round of voting ends on February 9th, so don’t wait! Vote now to support a military spouse attorney!