Bruce D Varner

Bruce Varner

Founding Partner

In Memoriam

“I’m a problem solver. Instead of telling clients they can’t do something, I like to help them figure out how they can.”

— Bruce Varner

Bruce D. Varner, Founding Partner of Varner & Brandt LLP, is a corporate attorney practicing in the areas of general business, corporate, real estate, banking and transactional law in our Riverside office. Bruce received his B.A. degree in political science from the University of California, Santa Barbara on a football scholarship and his Juris Doctorate with honors (Order of the Coif, Thurston Honor Society) from University of California, Hastings College of the Law.

Bruce is one of the leading corporate and business transactional attorneys in Southern California and throughout the United States. He and his dedicated team have handled some of the largest transactions and corporations in the Inland Empire, yet Bruce is also committed to nurturing and assisting small businesses and entrepreneurs set up, fund and form corporations, limited liability companies and partnerships. With his expertise he also provides these businesses ongoing business and legal advice to help ensure their long term success.

Associates of Bruce say his dedication and work ethic make him a key player in the Inland Empire’s business world, negotiating complex deals, solving problems and navigating the details. His clients, friends and family use words like integrity, intelligence and intensity to describe him.

“One of the most outstanding business attorneys in Southern California and the most outstanding business attorney, certainly, in the Inland Empire.”

– Jack H. Brown, Chairman & CEO of Stater Bros. Markets

Regularly volunteering for and supporting numerous community organizations and charities, as well as lending his expertise serving on many boards of directors, Bruce is committed to his community. Among his activities is being a volunteer for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Council and Specialized Services Bureau and he is a past Chair of the University of California Board of Regents.

When not practicing law and serving his clients and community, Bruce devotes his time and endless energy to his family and his many friends.


  • Banking
  • Corporate & Business
  • Finance
  • Mergers & Acquisitions
  • Real Estate


  • University of California, Hastings College of the Law (The Order of the Coif), JD, 1962
  • University of California at Santa Barbara, BA, 1958


  • United States Army infantry, 2nd Lieutenant; Active Duty, Fort Benning, Georgia (1959)


  • American Bar Association
  • The State Bar of California
  • Federal District Court for the Central District of California
  • Montana State Bar – Senior Attorney Member (Inactive)
  • Riverside County Bar Association
  • San Bernardino County Bar Association
  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Tax Court


  • Matich Corporation, Member, Board of Directors
  • Stater Bros. Development Inc., Board of Directors and Secretary
  • Board of Stater Bros. Markets Directors and Secretary and Executive Committee
  • Stater Bros. Holdings Inc., Board of Directors and Secretary
  • Super Rx, Inc., Member, Board of Directors and Secretary


  • Friends of the Arrowhead, Inc., Founding Member, Board of Directors
  • Foundation Board of Governors, California State University, San Bernardino
  • Inland Empire Economic Partnership, Past Member and Chairman of the Board of Directors
  • Monday Morning Group, Riverside California
  • National Orange Show, Board of Directors
  • Philanthropic Foundation, Member, Board of Directors, California State University, San Bernardino
  • President’s Advancement Council – California State University, San Bernardino, Past Chair
  • Professional Advisors Council, Inland Empire Community Foundation Serving Riverside and San Bernardino Counties
  • San Bernardino County Sheriff, Specialized Services Bureau, (Volunteer)
  • San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Council
  • Service Academy Review Board, 41st Congressional District, Past Member
  • Silver Eagle Club, Past Board of Directors and Past Chair
  • University of California Board of Regents, Past Chair
  • University of California Riverside Foundation Board of Trustees


  • AV Preeminent® 5.0 out of 5, Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell®
  • 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010 & 2009 Best Lawyers in America® Tier 1 Ranking (Selected by Peers)
  • 2017 The Jacques S. Yeager Leadership Award, Monday Morning Group
  • 2013 Best Attorneys in Los Angeles (Selected by Peers)
  • 2012 John B. Surr Award, San Bernardino County Bar Association
  • 2012 California’s Best Lawyers (Selected by Peers)
  • 2011 Honorary Doctor of Laws, California State University San Bernardino
  • 2009 Dick Bryant Memorial Award – Santa Clause Inc. (Bruce & Nancy Varner)
  • 2009 Shirley Pettis Award – Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital (Bruce & Nancy Varner)
  • 2009 Hometown Heroes Award – Assistance League of San Bernardino (Bruce & Nancy Varner)
  • 2007 Inland Empire’s Best Lawyers – Featured Inland Empire Magazine (September)
  • 2006 Appointed by Governor Schwarzenegger to the University of California Board of Regents
  • 2004 Arrowhead Distinguished Executive Officer – California State University San Bernardino
  • 2002 Visionary Award – San Bernardino Boys & Girls Club
  • 1996 Ernst & Young LLP Inland Empire Entrepreneur of the Year Award – Supporter of Entrepreneurship