Ms. O'Brien joined the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) in October 2012, as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO), and primary financial advisor, responsible for the development and execution of $4.0 billion in appropriated funds on an annual basis.
In addition, Ms. O'Brien has oversight of $2.0 billion in support from mission partners to include the Department of Justice (Department) Assets Forfeiture Fund, the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts (AOUSC), and the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) on an annual basis.
Ms. O'Brien is responsible for the U.S. Marshals Service procurement functions, financial and travel policy and compliance, budget formulation and execution, accounting operations and reports, the audited financial statements, and enterprise financial systems to include the Department’s Unified Financial Management System and E2 Travel Solutions.
In her tour of duty with the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS), Ms. O’Brien established a centralized financial processing center in Austin, Texas to serve the 94 district offices throughout the country for economies of scale and fiscal compliance giving time back to the mission; led the agency to receive its first unqualified (unmodified) financial audit opinion and annually for the last decade; and worked with the Department, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Congress to secure more financial resources and authorized positions.
In 1989, Ms. O'Brien started her 34-year Department career with the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) in an entry level position in an institution and accepted roles of increased responsibility, to include the Budget Officer for Headquarters and performing as the Chief (s) of the Accounting Operations (Bureau Accounting Officer) and the Financial Statements Sections.
Starting in 1999, Ms. O'Brien held positions with the Department's Justice Management Division (JMD), including the Chief, Accounting Operations and Reports Section, and Chief/Assistant Director, Quality Control and Compliance Group (Bureau Accounting Officer), for the Offices, Boards and Divisions (OBDs). She was responsible for the daily financial operations of over 150 appropriation accounts and regulatory reporting to the Treasury and Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
Ms. O'Brien helped eliminate material weaknesses and provided advice on financial activities, reporting, and system requirements throughout the Department. For her efforts, she was recognized by the Attorney General in 2005 for the restatement of the Office of Justice Program’s and the Department's audit opinion to unqualified and received the Justice Management Division (JMD) Controller's Award in 2006.
In 2009, she was promoted to the Senior Executive ranks, as the Staff Director of the Justice Management Division (JMD) Debt Collection Management Staff, responsible for accounting, operational and policy support services, and systems of record to monitor, manage and report debts owed to the U.S. Government.
Oversaw the collection of billions of dollars annually and subsequent disbursement of funds to Federal agencies, states, Treasury, and private parties. She was delegated the authority to contract with private litigation firms to further the collection of debts. Ms. O'Brien relied on her relationships with the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts (AOUSC), Federal agencies, and the Department’s litigating divisions in responding to the press and public.
Ms. O'Brien is a graduate of the Federal Law Enforcement Center. She attended the Federal Executive Institute (FEI) program on Leadership for a Democratic Society in 2008, the Department of Defense Vanguard Senior Executive Development Training Program in 2016 and completed her Executive (Education) Certificate in Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School in 2020.
She holds an undergraduate degree with majors in Accounting and Business Management, a Master of Business Administration degree (emphasis Public Administration) and is a Certified Public Accountant.