Sara Lord

Sara Lord

Chief Auditor


Minneapolis, MN USA

To me success isn't about being the best at only one thing, it's about living the best whole life.


My road in life has been direct.
Started at Big 4 firm as intern in 1997 and full time in 1998 based in Minneapolis, MN. Worked in audit client service.
Participated in national office rotation program starting in 2001 - relocated to Connecticut. Had first child when transitioning back to client service and returned to Minnesota.
Transitioned to telecommute arrangement with national office on flexible work schedule in 2004. Continued on flexible work arrangement for 5 years, while having two more children.
In 2006, transitioned to global regulatory and public policy role, based in Minneapolis, but travel as needed.
In 2009 joined regional firm in a national office and client service role. Returned to full-time schedule. Re-engaged in AICPA volunteer work in 2011 on Technical Issues Committee.
Joined RSM as partner in national office audit department in 2012. Became National Director of Assurance services in 2015 and Chief Auditor in 2019.
Keep following my journey


High School
Minot High School
University of North Dakota


Chief Auditor

I oversee accounting and audit policy and audit innovation.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Problem Solving

Day to Day

I spend a lot of time on conference calls and in meetings. This does offset with time spent reviewing standards and policies and drafting changes and suggestions.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for college students

Many CPA firms recruit on campus, so if you're in college, go to the career fairs and events. If your college doesn't host them, join them at a school nearby or reach out to the firms and see if you could be a candidate for a summer program. Also connect on social media - this works for experienced candidates as well as college candidates. Finally, ask your parents or friends - they may know someone in the profession who would be happy to meet with you and help you get started.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:



The Noise I Shed

From Peers:

"You can't have it all at once. You need to choose between work and your family. This often includes people (typically well intended) telling you how you should balance things and what they think your successful life should look like."