Su O’Sullivan: Driving an Accurate & Collaborative Team

“I have a deep respect for Opus and the people who work here," said Su O'Sullivan, CPA, Vice President of Accounting. “Our culture is genuine. It's based on our values and a collaborative spirit. We work together with passion, drive and creativity and value new perspectives. That's why people come to work here – and why they stay so long." 

Su oversees a team that currently totals 22 people.

“Accounting and payroll have a combined total of more than 300 years of Opus experience," she said. “And 60% of our team members have worked here for more than 10 years.  When interviewing candidates for open positions, this seems to impress them the most."  

It's impressive indeed. That kind of longevity is a testament to Opus' culture for sure – and also to Su's exceptional ability to manage and lead with integrity. 

The Beginnings of a Leader 

Su has always been instinctively drawn to leading others, starting when she was a young woman. 

“I coached a Park District swim team for about six years," Su said. “The kids were ages 6 to 17 with various levels of experience and ability. I loved coaching and working individually with them. It was rewarding to see them gain confidence and drop their times." 

“Math was my favorite subject in school. So, I thought that being a math teacher would be the perfect career path. But my dad had other ideas. He insisted I graduate from college with a business degree."

“When I was in high school I took an accounting class and really enjoyed it. I was the only person I knew who actually liked it, so I felt like studying accounting in college would be a good choice." 

Su graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Accounting and a minor in Mathematics from Eastern Illinois University. She then passed the CPA exam. 

For two years after college, Su worked as an auditor for KPMG where she focused on the healthcare line of business. Her next move was to Opus. 

Two Decades of Opus Leadership

In 1999, Su accepted a position as Project Accountant for the Milwaukee office. 

It was the beginning of what has become a career spanning more than 20 years at Opus. 

It wasn't long before she was promoted to Accounting Supervisor, then Assistant Controller, Controller and Director of Accounting. Her career progression was steady, taking on increased levels of responsibility with each position. In 2019, Su was promoted to her current role as Vice President of Accounting. 

Based in our Chicago office, Su has the overall responsibility for financial reporting and payroll for the entire organization, including more than 20 active joint ventures. 

"I'm responsible for supporting my team and overseeing the work we produce," she said. “We work together as a team in every aspect of accounting and payroll to prepare internal and external reporting for Opus. Everyone contributes to our overall success. Our ultimate goal is accurate financial reporting and helping our clients."

To help define their work and direction, Su and her team created mission, vision and value statements specific to their department. 

“Aligned with Opus' companywide mission, vision and values, they provide affirmation about what we do, where we are going and how we do it," Su said. “Our mission, vision and values are guideposts for dialog and decision making and help us understand and embrace our role and commitment to each other and Opus."  

The statements include words like accurate (of course), timely, exceptional, dynamic, consistent, innovative, collaborative, helpful, accountable, rewarding and resourceful.

Taking a step like this to get everyone on the same page and engaged is a reflection of Su's leadership style. 

“Su is a leader who is not afraid to use her voice," said Dennis Power, Chief Financial Officer. “She has strong decision-making skills and sets the bar high for ethics, accuracy and timeliness. She leads with grace, always supporting and caring for her teammates with compassion and respect for work/life balance. She is a dedicated leader and an invaluable asset to Opus."  

“I am never bored and challenged daily," Su said. “Even after being at Opus for 21+ years, I still find new challenges and am continually looking to improve processes to find better ways. More importantly, I have developed wonderful relationships with many Opus associates over the years that I will always cherish."  


Su has been an active member of the Illinois CPA Society for many years. 

In addition to spending time with her family, she enjoys listening to live music and finds balance and stress relief while practicing yoga.


Our associates are talented, dedicated and knowledgeable. They streamline complex projects and always deliver value to clients. Read more profiles of our team.

Filed Under: Associate Profile, Chicago