The application of local control theory combined with nonadiabatic ab initio molecular dynamics to study the photoinduced intramolecular proton transfer reaction in 4-hydroxyacridine was investigated. All calculations were performed within the framework of linear-response time-dependent density functional theory. The computed pulses revealed important information about the underlying excited-state nuclear dynamics highlighting the involvement of collective vibrational modes that would normally be neglected in a study performed on model systems constrained to a subset of the full configuration space. This study emphasizes the strengths of local control theory for the design of pulses that can trigger chemical reactions associated with the population of a given molecular excited state. In addition, analysis of the generated pulses can help to shed new light on the photophysics and photochemistry of complex molecular systems.