John McGowan, CFP®, MBA Mandala Financial Advisors

About John McGowan, CFP®, MBA

John is the founder of Mandala Financial Advisors and its lead advisor.

John’s career in financial services spans three decades, helping individuals and families manage the opportunities, risks, and financial complexities that come with modern life. Over the years, many of his clients were desirous of resolving injustices in the world. In collaboration with those clients, John deployed socially responsible investment and philanthropic strategies to help them achieve their personal financial goals and their objectives for environmental and social change.

More recently, John became increasingly concerned as he watched many protections of vulnerable people and places loosened and eliminated. He believes each of us is empowered to create positive social and environmental impact through our financial investments, known broadly as, conscious capitalism. He made the decision to form and lead a new business, Mandala Financial Advisors, to leverage his deep wealth management experience and make his sophisticated tools and strategies available to all people, regardless of their life stage and their level of wealth.

John believes every client must begin by constructing a strong financial foundation. He guides each client towards financial wellness by engaging them in thoughtful planning, education, and coaching. Once the foundation is in place, he uses ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) investing strategies to help clients achieve their financial goals and align their investments with their progressive values. John is a passionate advocate of the rapidly evolving ESG movement and is committed to keeping his clients at the forefront of new developments.

John’s ideal client is a lifelong learner who values personal wellness and cares about the greater world. He uses a collaborative relationship approach, embraces what makes each client unique, and delivers personalized advice. He founded the firm on values of integrity, openness, and inclusiveness. Cultural differences are celebrated, not ignored. He is committed to regular reviews of the firm’s policies and practices through a lens that addresses systemic racial injustice and pursues true equality.

John is passionately engaged in non-profit arts, human rights, and environmental community activities. He is the past chairman of the Lookingglass Theatre board of directors in Chicago, a member of Mainframe Studios board of directors in Des Moines, a leader in LGBTQ advocacy organizations, and a supporter of groups protecting and restoring our precious natural environments in Illinois, Iowa, and Colorado. He enjoys fitness training, hiking, skiing, and co-raising Morty, a mischievous Jack Russell Terrier, with his life partner, Dave. He calls Des Moines (IA) and Salida (CO) home, and is still in the embrace of his beloved Chicago.

John has an MBA from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and a B.S. in Mathematics from Loyola University of Chicago. He is a CFP (Certified Financial Planner™).

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The First Earth Day

April 22, 2022

I remember participating in the first Earth Day in 1970 at the 8-room rural school I attended outside the town of Marengo, Illinois. Riley School doesn’t look much different today! Mr. Desmond, our science teacher, organized us. I dug up Sugar Maple saplings from the grove at our home and we planted them in the […]

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Taking the shame out of dining out (a lot).

June 16, 2021

Does the thought of learning what you spend on restaurants and carry-out each month make you uneasy? If you answered “Yes,” you aren’t alone. As a financial advisor, I regularly hear the stress in a new client’s voice when we come to the “Dining Out” category of their expenses. “I’m not sure I want to […]

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Workplace injustice. Silence is no longer an option.

June 11, 2020

I’ve noticed on LinkedIn many executives expressing their concern for those who have faced injustice in this imperfect world. They encourage us all to be part of solutions, making the world a better place, arm-in-arm. I’m not buying it. Some of these executives are capable of leading change. I laude them. But many are feeding […]

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Ideal Clients

  • Gen Y/Millennials
  • Holistic Financial Planning
  • Pro Bono
  • Retirement Planning
  • SRI/ESG (Socially Responsible Investing/Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance)

Ways Advisor Charges

  • Monthly Fee
  • Hourly
  • Assets Under Management

Fee Options

  • Monthly Fee: $220+/mo
  • Hourly Fee: $275+/hr
  • Assets Under Management: 1.00%

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