John McGowan (BS, MBA)

John McGowan focuses in the
following client markets or areas of practice:

  • Charitable Giving
  • Estate & Generational Planning Issues
  • LGBT Couples and Families
  • Millennials
  • Retirement Planning & Distribution Rules
  • Socially Responsible Investments

Planning Specialties

John is the founder of Mandala Financial Advisors and its lead advisor. His 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 change through our financial investments, known broadly as impact investing. 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 foster positive social and environmental impact. John is a passionate advocate of the rapidly evolving ESG movement and is committed to keeping his clients at the forefront of this approach to investing.

Additional Information

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™).

NAPFA Start Date

May 13, 2020


This Office

500 Locust St Ste 160 Des Moines, IA 50309-4104 Phone: (312) 890-6221