Susan represents creditors and other stakeholders in bankruptcy proceedings in many jurisdictions across the United States, but primarily on the west coast. She has also acted as local counsel to parties needing representation in larger insolvency cases in Oregon and Washington on issues ranging from application of the automatic stay, assumption/rejection of executory contracts and leases, filing and objecting to proofs of claim, to voting, supporting, and objecting to Chapter 11 Plans of Reorganization.

Susan also has extensive background representing real estate owners, investors, receivers, and lessors, including transactional work, workouts and insolvencies, commercial litigation, receiverships, and eviction proceedings for industrial, retail office, and other commercial landlords.

Susan is also an experienced litigator in all types of business and commercial litigation, including pre-litigation entity governance issues and shareholder disputes.

I have focused on business problem-solving for over 30 years. My experience includes representations of all types of parties in distressed business situations, including debtors, creditors, trustees, lenders, commercial lessors, creditor’s committees, governmental entities, and stakeholders in business entities with internal disputes. I strive to be a trusted advisor and work with other team members as necessary to advise and carry out creative and effective problem-solving strategies that achieve my client’s goals and objectives.

  • Acted as Co-Lead counsel in breach of contract litigation against government entity on behalf of non-profit service provider, which was resolved by settlement just prior to commencement of trial following extensive discovery and pre-trial litigation.
  • Represented national real estate investment management company in default proceedings and breach of lease litigation arising from monetary and non-monetary defaults, including violation of environmental covenants and related default proceedings. Representation required extensive work to recover and clean up premises, including removal of extensive tenant-installed modifications to premises and a multi-stage public auction of contents.
  • Represented receiver in liquidation of operating medical logistics transport business, including transition of operations to successor provider, and recovery of critical IP assets.
  • Won defense jury verdict on all claims as lead trial lawyer representing a national mortgage servicer in United States District Court, resulting in injunctive and declaratory relief on underlying claims for breach of contract, breach of covenant of good faith and fair dealing, and violation of the Consumer Protection Act.
  • Won motion for monetary sanctions against individual owners and managers of debtor in Subchapter V bankruptcy case for failure to comply with court orders regarding discovery in Bankruptcy Rule 2004 Examination.
  • Participated in Sussman Shank’s representation of long term care facility facing complex regulatory issues resulting from alleged elder abuse claims and unfavorable administrative investigation. Preserved facility’s license and facilitated successful sale to third party, and retention of client’s remaining long term care facilities.
  • Represented the chair of the committee of unsecured creditors in Chapter 11 of medical technology business, which required new capital to continue operating and develop biotechnology product. Pursuant to a consensual Chapter 11 Plan, unsecured creditors received stock in new company to be created post-confirmation.
  • Susan was creditor counsel to unpaid fruit growers who provided product to Chapter 11 debtor prior to commencement of Chapter 11 bankruptcy. She obtained recovery on producer lien claims and allowance of their equity/retainage claims. Due to the successful efforts of Susan and Sussman Shank, which benefitted the creditor body as a whole, Sussman Shank was awarded recovery of substantially all of the grower’s attorney fees in a global settlement pursuant to 28 USC 503(b)(3)(D) for having made a “substantial contribution” to the Chapter 11 case.
  • Susan represented a group of creditors in a Chapter 11 case to recover their partially-constructed private jets in a Bend, Oregon aircraft facility operated by the debtor. After debtor closed its doors without warning with the jets inside and creditor deposits unaccounted for, Susan moved successfully for the appointment of a Chapter 11 trustee to oust debtor’s management. The clients then sought to purchase the debtor’s assets, continue the business, and complete construction of their planes through a Section 363 sale, but had to battle an aviation company owned by the People’s Republic of China at an auction for the assets. They ultimately succeeded after a creative “flip the deal” process resulting in Susan’s clients retaining the manufacturing technology and licensing it to China Aviation.
  • Represented receiver appointed to sell and liquidate a commercial building which shut down only midway through a major renovation. Obtained order staying the lender’s foreclosure action and tolling the statute for new construction lien claims to permit receiver to negotiate settlements with multiple construction lien claimants and an inventory claiming procedure to resolve personal property ownership disputes.

  • Northwest Bankruptcy Institute: Evidence (2022)
  • Oregon State Bar Business Litigation Section: Staying Out of Trouble: What Business Litigators Need to Know About Bankruptcy (2022)
  • Multnomah Bar Association: Bankruptcy Filings in the Aftermath of COVID (2021)
  • Oregon State Bar: Banking, Finance, and Debtor-Creditor Concerns: “Up In Smoke? Hot Spots for Cannabis-related Businesses” (2018)

Professional Affiliations:

  • American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Northwest Chapter of the Turnaround Management Association (President in 2016) and board member
  • National Turnaround Management Association – Network of Women
  • American Bar Association

Professional Organizations:

  • Oregon State Bar Debtor-Creditor Section
    • Chairperson: 2013
    • Executive Committee: 2007-2014
    • Chair: Annual Meeting and CLE (2003-2011)
  • Washington State Bar Creditor-Debtor Section


I love to see other parts of the world – both domestic and international (I am still reflecting on a wonderful pre-pandemic 2 month sabbatical in Italy and France). I am an avid reader of historical fiction and biographies of notable Americans. I also enjoy spending time with my expanding family, friends, and my dog, Hugo.

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