The world around us is becoming increasingly complex, including the areas of investment management and retirement planning. In 1991, Mark Dowling and Dale Yahnke founded Dowling & Yahnke to help investors reduce the complexity in their financial lives and free them to focus on their true passions. Over the last twenty-nine years, our mission has been to provide our clients with peace of mind in a complex financial world.

At Dowling & Yahnke, we approach investment advice differently than Wall Street firms, insurance companies, and banks. We serve our clients as a fiduciary – putting clients’ interests first – with transparency and an investment approach based upon a well-grounded, long-term investment philosophy, which is not influenced by market fads or hype.

As an independent, fee-only wealth advisory firm, Dowling & Yahnke provides time-tested, objective investment management and financial planning while adhering to an exceptional standard – the fiduciary standard. Founded in 1991, the San Diego-based Firm currently manages over $4 billion for more than 1,200 clients, primarily individuals, families, and nonprofit organizations. For the thirteenth consecutive year, Dowling & Yahnke has had an adviser listed on Barron’s Top 100 Independent Wealth Advisors. Our team includes 12 CFA® charterholders, 20 CFP® practitioners, and graduates from Harvard University, the University of Chicago, and Northwestern University.

Dowling & Yahnke’s uniqueness and longevity are derived from the Firm’s five core values – the timeless guideposts for the Firm’s behavior and decision-making.

Enduring Relationships

We believe strong relationships with our clients, our clients’ trusted accounting and legal professionals, vendors, colleagues, and the community are all critical for long-term success. To create these strong relationships, we nurture trust through honest, open communication, and long-term commitment. We respect the value of others’ time, opinions, and contributions. Exercising diplomacy and patience, we foster a spirit of connectedness to our clients, our co-workers, and our community. We recognize the value of teamwork, take an interest in the success of others, and demonstrate reliability by setting clear expectations and following through on commitments.


Excellence is not the exception, it is the prevailing attitude at Dowling & Yahnke. Excellence entails adherence to discipline and consistency to ensure making the best choices over and over again and not getting distracted by fads or hype. Excellence requires that we demand more of ourselves than others do. It means doing our very best today and taking it one step further tomorrow. Excellence is the unrelenting pursuit of the highest quality. Our employees believe in what we are doing and that its value warrants our persistent commitment.

We go above and beyond the expected in delivering client service. We serve our clients by anticipating their needs and embracing every challenge with energy, thought, and determination. We enhance the client experience by imparting operational ingenuity that offers enhanced transparency, security, and timeliness. We consciously devote our time and effort to detail to ensure the accuracy of our work.

Commitment to excellence is not limited to our clients. We extend this to all our clients’ trusted partners (e.g., accountants, attorneys), business partners, vendors, colleagues, and others in the community. We strive for excellence in our dealings with all interested parties.


We believe we have an ethical and professional obligation to always put our clients’ interests before our own. We never take for granted the trust clients have placed in us. We care for our clients the same way we care for our own families. In an effort to continually earn and renew their confidence, we actively seek opportunities to exceed our clients’ expectations. We act respectfully and honestly with our clients, prospects, other professionals, colleagues, and vendors. We consistently honor our commitments and deliver on our promises.

Our actions match our words, and we accept responsibility for our actions. At Dowling & Yahnke, we do not compromise our principles for the sake of expediency or profit. We do not try to be all things to all people. As a team, we help each other and look for ways to make each other shine. Integrity is not a value of convenience; we are true to our principles in good times as well as bad, however difficult that may be.


Our goal is to be the best at what we do. We view the pursuit of knowledge as an essential component in achieving this objective. Dowling & Yahnke expects each individual at our Firm to show initiative and pursue avenues to grow, learn, and develop as an individual and as a professional. We use a “knowledge tool kit” as a metaphor for our collective expertise, gained through study, experience, and a passion for learning. Our team acquires and leverages these tools to solve problems and deliver world-class service.

Our team is composed of highly educated individuals who are continuously striving to achieve the highest industry designations in the field of wealth management. We take great pride that we have ten CFA® charterholders, sixteen CFP® practitioners, and post-graduates from world-renowned business schools including the Harvard Business School, the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. We believe knowledge separates us from other investment advisory firms.


At Dowling & Yahnke, we want to exceed expectations and provide our clients with a “wow” experience. Our passion provides the wow factor. It begins with caring about the results of one’s effort and leads to feeling focused, driven, and engaged. Passion is being innovative and seeking ways to improve everything we do. By sharing knowledge, encouraging colleagues, and celebrating successes (and understanding challenges), we grow passion. It is contagious and energizing. Passion is demonstrated through constant kindness, consideration, helpfulness, and understanding. It is proactive, thorough, and always thinking ahead. Passion is going the extra mile.