Vikki Vargas is NBC4’s Orange County Bureau Chief, overseeing all news gathering operations for the station in Orange County. She joined NBC4 in July 1982 as a general assignment reporter, and has been stationed in and has covered the major news stories in Orange County since 1984.
Prior to joining NBC4, Vargas was a news reporter and weekend anchor/producer at KESQ-TV in Palm Springs.
During her tenure at NBC4, Vargas has covered a number of national and international stories, from the Republican National Convention to the release of the American hostages in Iran. Locally, Vargas has covered the federal indictment of Orange County's former Sheriff Mike Carona. She provided non-stop, live coverage of the Santiago Fire in 2007 and covered the San Diego murder of Chelsea King in 2010.
During her career, Vargas has received several awards and honors, including the prestigious Golden Mike Award. She was part of the team that won a Los Angeles Area Emmy Award for Best Newscast in 2008, was honored by the Orange County Press Club and for best news reporting and the State Bar Association for outstanding reporting.
In addition, she was named Latina of the year by the National Latino Peace Officers Association in 2006.
In 2011, Vargas received the General William Lyon Crystal Vision Philanthropy Award from the Orangewood Children’s Foundation for her work with foster youth in Orange County. For her achievements both on-air and in the community, she was honored with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Hispanic Media in 2010, and an Avance Award from the Hispanic Americans for Fairness in Media in 2005.
Vargas chaired the year-long celebration of the 50th Anniversary of California State University Fullerton – her alma mater. In 1997, she received the Vision & Visionaries Award from the college, the highest possible tribute given by the school to alumni.
Vargas is active with the Orangewood Children’s Foundation, and with the Guardian Scholars program at Cal State Fullerton. Both groups give scholarships to former foster youth.
In partnership with NBC4, she is establishing a scholarship to be given annually to a journalism student at Cal State Fullerton, beginning in 2013.
A native of Downey, she resides in Orange County with her husband and daughter.