USC Board of Trustees: Joseph Ucuzoglu

Joseph Ucuzoglu has spent the bulk of his career at Deloitte. (Photo/Courtesy of Deloitte)


Deloitte Global CEO Joseph Ucuzoglu named to USC Board of Trustees

Trojan alumnus considers it “an enormous privilege” to be joining the board.

June 05, 2024 By Greg Hernandez

USC alumnus Joseph Ucuzoglu, Deloitte Global CEO, has been named one of the newest members of the USC Board of Trustees.

“I’m pleased to welcome Joe Ucuzoglu to USC’s Board of Trustees,” USC President Carol Folt said. “He’s a dedicated Trojan with financial skills, decades of leadership, and a strong record of consensus-building that will help us achieve our wide-ranging goals and ensure USC’s upward trajectory. USC Board of Trustees Chair Suzanne Nora Johnson and I look forward to working closely with Joe – and the full board — in support of USC’s special mission in the years ahead.”

“Joe’s significant experience with companies around the world in a wide variety of industries will be invaluable to our board,” Nora Johnson said. “His accounting acumen will provide enhanced risk management skills to our board. We are delighted that he will continue his long association with his alma mater.”

Ucuzoglu, a Los Angeles native, graduated from USC in 1997 with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. He currently serves as chair of the USC Marshall School of Business Board of Councilors and is a member of the USC Leventhal School of Accounting’s Securities and Exchange Commission and Financial Reporting Institute Advisory Council.

‘It’s an exceptional university’

“It’s an exceptional university, and I’ve been able to experience it through so many different dimensions over time,” Ucuzoglu said. “It’s an enormous privilege to be trusted as a steward of this institution.”

Ucuzoglu has fond memories of his years as a Trojan and being involved in university life. This is why he has kept an active relationship with USC over the years and been willing to share his enthusiasm and wisdom with students. He advises them to take advantage of as many different opportunities as they can.

“The more subjects you explore, the more different people you interact with, and the more diverse perspectives you’re exposed to, you accumulate a richer mosaic of the world,” he said. “That’s what it takes to ultimately be successful in a very complicated, rapidly changing environment.”

Except for a stint as senior advisor to the chief accountant at the SEC, Ucuzoglu has spent his whole career at Deloitte. The organization provides companies and government agencies with such services as audit and assurance, tax and legal, consulting, risk advisory, and financial advisory services.

After his years at the SEC, Ucuzoglu became Deloitte’s managing partner for government, regulatory and professional matters. In 2015, he was named the leader of Deloitte U.S. Audit & Assurance practice.

“I feel like I’ve had a dozen careers at Deloitte because I’ve had so many different opportunities within this special firm,” Ucuzoglu said. “It is important for leaders to have a healthy dose of humility, a high level of curiosity and a desire to listen and learn.”

Leading a global leader

Ucuzoglu became CEO of Deloitte U.S. in 2019, and last year was elected the Deloitte Global CEO. Deloitte is the largest professional services organization in the world, employing more than 450,000 professionals in 150 countries.

Despite his success over the years, Ucuzoglu said that when he began at Deloitte in 1997, he did not aspire to lead the company. His initial two-year plan was to gain enough work experience to obtain his Certified Public Accountant license.

“It’s not about picking the title early on and becoming obsessed with it,” he said. “I enjoyed the subject matter, believed in the importance of the work, and I wanted to dedicate myself to becoming exceptional at it. What led to additional opportunities is being valued by clients and being respected by colleagues. It’s being trusted by those you work with to take on leadership roles.”

Ucuzoglu is also a member of the Business Roundtable, the World Economic Forum’s International Business Council, and the advisory board of the Yale School of Management Program on Stakeholder Innovation and Management. He said he believes that associating yourself with great institutions leads to a “multitude” of rewarding experiences.

“I try to immerse myself in organizations that I believe in, and I think nothing could rise higher on the list than USC,” he said. “I have a very deep affection and deep love for the institution.”

As a USC trustee, Ucuzoglu said one of his biggest priorities will be looking out for the long-term health of the university.

“It’s a transformative time in higher education,” he said. “The school is thriving, and I just want to play a role in making sure we’re doing all the right things to continue on an excellent trajectory.”