Governor Walker appoints Susan Opper as District Attorney for Waukesha County

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WAUKESHA COUNTY (WITI) — Governor Scott Walker appointed Susan Opper as the District Attorney for Waukesha County. Opper will take over for Brad Schimel, who was sworn in as Attorney General last month.

“As a twenty-three–year veteran of the Waukesha District Attorney’s office, Susan Opper has shown that she has what it takes to build on Brad’s success as District Attorney. I’m confident she will serve the citizens of Waukesha County well,” Governor Walker said.

The previous two Waukesha County District Attorneys, Brad Schimel and Paul Bucher, both support Opper and speak highly of her qualifications. Schimel recommends her “without hesitation,” as “she has been a leader in this office for virtually her entire career” and has “demonstrated tremendous management abilities and aptitude.” Bucher agrees, writing that Opper is someone “who is well-respected within the community and who has the legal acumen and leadership skills necessary to lead one of the largest district attorney offices within this great state.” He adds that “I have no doubt that she will assertively and aggressively strive to protect the citizens of Waukesha County in that capacity.”

The Governor’s office received over fifty letters of recommendation on Opper’s behalf, coming from current and former judges, prosecutors, private attorneys, law enforcement, and business leaders. This outpouring of support demonstrates the confidence she has inspired in all parts of the community. Some of those who wrote in include Waukesha’s the chief of police, current and former sheriffs, the county corporation counsel, and a number of defense attorneys. Judge Michael Bohren, who has served on the Waukesha County Circuit Court bench since 2000, also provided his perspective. “When Ms. Opper is in my court I know the case will be fairly and well presented, and she will present issues of criminal responsibility and safety to the Court in a reasoned fashion,” he writes. “She is fair and firm, she is professional and ethical, and [she is] ever vigilant to ensure justice and safety in the community.”

Opper is perhaps most respected for her effective leadership of the drug prosecution unit. Captain Frank McElderry of the Metro Drug Enforcement Group is one of many who praise Opper on this point, calling her a “visionary” who effectively brings together the best ideas. “With her help,” he says, “law enforcement in Waukesha County has achieved a high level of leadership and is viewed as an example for other law enforcement agencies.” Schimel says that, due to Opper’s work, Waukesha County leads the State of Wisconsin in prosecuting drug dealers who cause deaths. “She takes on tough cases and wins.”

Opper earned her Juris Doctor degree from Marquette University Law School and her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She and her husband live in the town of Delafield.