ASU alumna named on Professional Builder's 40 under 40 list

Cholla Susini has been instrumental in the growth of home-building companies in Phoenix

An ASU alumna and  Scottsdale-based construction company executive was named one of Professional Builder’s 2018 40 Under 40.

Cholla Susini graduated from ASU with a bachelor’s degree in housing and urban development in 2003 and has since been an instrumental part in the growth of homebuilding companies in the Phoenix area. She serves as the vice president of marketing for Joseph Carl Homes and Adams Craig Acquisitions, which share ownership.

The magazine's yearly 40 Under 40 list is comprised of professionals who excel at their jobs inside the home-building community. These individuals have helped their companies grow from start-ups and small businesses to well-established mainstays in their industries. 

Susini got involved at the start of Adams Craig and Joseph Carl Homes and has worked in many different departments within the companies. 

“Both companies were start-up companies when I started and were small,” she said. “So I wear many hats – sales, marketing, purchasing, project manager and I’ve even been the on-site supervisor. So I have kind of done it all.” 

She said Adams Craig is distinct from other builders because it uses as many materials as possible from existing homes to build new ones.

"We are a green builder and sustainable builder," she said. "One thing that sets us apart is we go into a home that is already established and we repurpose and reuse as much of it as possible. We try to reuse as much as we can from the existing home."

Susini said one of her projects was awarded an Emerald Award from Home Innovation Research Labs, which is one of her biggest accomplishments. The award goes to projects that use sustainable practices and materials. 

"We got an Emerald Award on one of our projects, which is the highest designation you can get through Home Innovation, which is the green rating system," she said. "So that would be my biggest accomplishment there, because it is very hard to obtain." 

Susini said she credits her success to her education at ASU and how well the housing and urban development program helped her prepare for the professional world.

“It was an awesome program, because at the time you went between the design college and the construction college, so you kind of got both sides of what it would take to do everything in the industry,” she said. 

Susini said the 40 Under 40 list was something she had always strived for, but her boss nominated her without her knowing. 

“It was something that I have always had my eyes on and wanted to apply for it, but I didn’t know I was worthy of it yet,” she said. “My boss nominated me without telling me.” 

She said it was exciting to make the list, but it was especially rewarding for her boss to recognize her hard work and nominate her for this accomplishment. 

“Sometimes you don’t realize what you’ve accomplished until you’ve seen it through someone else’s eyes,” she said.

Melissa Jones, a friend and former colleague, said that Susini is deserving of this recognition based on her work ethic and dedication alone. 

“She’s professional and dedicated to the tasks she takes on,” Jones said. “Her work ethic and ability to be a team oriented worker alone, is definitely worthy of this accomplishment.”

Susini said she participated in the student competition at the National Association of Home Builders Show every year while in college, which helped her get a job before graduation. 

“At that time, the construction college would go to the National Home Builder convention, and there’s a student competition and you get a fake project and you have to plan it and present it,” she said. “My team got second place in that competition, and right after that, builders just came up and started offering jobs.” 

Stephen Adams, co-founder and chief financial officer of Adams Craig Acquisitions, said that Susini is committed to doing all the work needed to get a project done. 

“She rolls up her sleeves in the tough times,” he said. “When we lost a superintendent, she built the houses herself from permitting, to wet and dry utilities, to purchasing, and then selling the homes as the agent.”  

Adams said he nominated Susini because of her passion for the industry and drive to help the company grow.

“Her rise in homebuilding is in no small part due to her passion for our industry,” he said. “She helped improve our company’s revenue and worked hard and showed her peers the higher level of excellence that is needed.” 

Reach the reporter at or follow @therealsperez on Twitter. 

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