Broker Check
John L. Nielsen

John L. Nielsen

Founder & President

John Nielsen, CFP© is founder and President of Retirement Planning Associates, and has been providing personal financial planning and investment management services since 1983. Mr. Nielsen’s primary objective is to provide his clients with the information, techniques, strategies, and personal guidance necessary to organize their financial affairs, create a realistic set of goals, and formulate an effective financial plan. Mr. Nielsen recognizes the importance of long-term relationships and enjoys working with his client's existing professionals (CPA, Attorney, insurance agent) to maximize their potential for financial success.

Education and Professional Credentials

Mr. Nielsen received his Bachelors of Science (BS) degree in Personal Financial Planning from Brigham Young University, and his Masters of Business Administration (MBA) in Taxation and Personal Financial Planning from Golden Gate University. Both BYU and GGU are pioneers in the area of personal financial planning and were the first in the U.S. to offer degrees in personal financial planning. Mr. Nielsen earned the designation of CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner in 1983 and is a Registered Principal and Investment Advisor Representative of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, member SIPC.

Professional activities

Mr. Nielsen is an active member of the Financial Planning Association; serving as a past member of the local Board of Directors. Since 1983 he has been actively involved in educating the public on financial planning, investment management, and estate planning topics; having taught courses at university extension centers, multi-national corporations, local adult education centers, and many community organizations.


John has been married to Denise for 37 years and they are the parents of seven wonderful children, ages 20 to 33. Denise is from Memphis and John is a Southern California native. They live in semi-rural Santa Rosa Valley, California.

The Nielsen family is actively involved with local, state, and national political campaigns. In addition to politics, Denise and John enjoy spending time with their kids who live in various parts of the USA.

Personal Activities

John is Private Pilot and enjoys flying his Cessna 182 (Skylane) all over the Western states visiting clients along with family and friends.


John loves anything to do with the outdoors and has a passion for hiking and long-distance backpacking in the High Sierra. Hiking the John Muir Trail and High Sierra Trails with his sons have been challenging highlights. He has also been involved with the Boy Scouts of America for more than 20 years in a variety of positions (Scout Master & Scout Committee Chair) working with the younger Boy Scouts along with the older Varsity and Venturing programs.

Community Involvement


Being an active member of and working within the community is also very important to John and his family. They have been long-time supporters of theANASAZI Foundation, a non-profit outdoor behavioral healthcare program located in Arizona for adolescents and young adults. “It is the mission of ANASAZI Foundation to prepare parents and children to turn their hearts to one another, begin anew, and walk in harmony in the wilderness of the world.”


John has served as President and as a member of the board of directors of the Ventura County Chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. NAMI advocates for access to services, treatment, education and research and is steadfast in its commitment to raising awareness and building a community of hope for all of those in need. From its inception in 1979, NAMI has been dedicated to improving the lives of individuals and families affected by mental illness.


John has been in the financial services industry since 1983 and holds Series 24,7,63 & 65 securities registrations. He also holds a life and disability license (CA Insurance Lic. #0636162) and a long-term care certification. There are currently over 80,000 licensed Certified Financial Planners. John's license number is 2307.