About Us

Our Firm

Our mission is to get to know and understand your financial needs, wants, and long-term goals.

We want to help you develop, implement, and monitor a strategy that’s designed to address your individual financial situation.

John McNeil, Partner

John McNeil is senior partner at Mobile Bay Financial, following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, who established the firm in 1922. He studied finance at the University of Alabama and joined the practice in 1979.

Focused on helping his clients retire with confidence, John emphasizes retirement income distribution and helping clients maximize income while minimizing taxes. He is also a Life Underwriting Training Council Fellow.

John is married to his high school sweetheart, Martha. Together they have three children, Mac, Robert, and Virginia, as well as four grandchildren. An active member of his community, John has served on the board of directors of several organizations:

  • University of Alabama Donor Advised Fund, trustee, 12 years
  • Community Foundation of South Alabama, 17 years
  • Mercy Medical Foundation, seven years
  • University of Alabama Planned Giving Advisory Board, 12 years
  • Honors College Board of Visitors, University of Alabama, seven years
  • National Wild Turkey Federation, former president, 11 years
  • American Junior Miss, 14 years, three as president
  • Main Street Mobile, eight years, two as president
  • Mobile Association of Insurance & Financial Advisors, 23 years, one as president

Virginia McNeil O'Brien, Partner

Mobile native Virginia McNeil joined Mobile Bay Financial in May 2012, representing the fourth generation of her family to join the firm. Virginia graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Science in consumer sciences with a concentration in family financial planning from the University of Alabama and served as president of the Capstone Financial Planning Association.

Before joining the firm, Virginia spent a year at an insurance wholesaler in Birmingham, Alabama, to gain experience in multiple facets of the financial industry. Her product knowledge and well-rounded approach to financial planning have made her a valuable asset to the firm.

Virginia is not new to working at Mobile Bay Financial, having worked at the firm during her college summer breaks and developing a passion for the industry. Seeing how her father, her grandfather, and the other advisors at the firm helped so many people in such a tremendous way drew Virginia to the profession.

Virginia and her husband, Grey, were married in April of 2016. Together, they have two dogs: Bama, a black lab, and Lilly, a yellow lab. In February 2018, they welcomed their first child, McNeil Marie O’Brien, to the world.

In addition to providing successful financial strategies for her clients, Virginia is also a dedicated community volunteer. Since returning to her hometown, Virginia has been active with the Centre of Living Arts, helping to nurture Mobile’s growing artistic young professional population. She was also selected as a candidate for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s 2014 Man & Woman of the Year campaign, an honor celebrating those who have raised significant funds for the society.

Shane Cole, Administrative Assistant

Shane Cole has been a member of the Mobile Bay Financial team for the past five years, providing comprehensive, in-force policy and account servicing to all clients. With more than 20 years of office management experience, she assists with applications and account openings and is the primary contact for fund transfers, distributions, and general account servicing. Shane lives in Mobile with her husband, Steve; they have two grown children.

Grace Copeland, Director of Marketing and Relationship Management

Grace Copeland plans client events and informational seminars and also helps with the office management duties, keeping Mobile Bay Financial running smoothly.

Born and raised in Mobile, Alabama, Grace graduated from the University of Alabama with a Bachelor of Science in human environmental sciences. After moving to Milan, Italy, for a year, she launched her marketing and event-planning career back at home at a nonprofit organization.

Grace loves traveling, being on the water, and getting to know each client who comes through our door.

Bama, Office Mascot

Bama, the official mascot of Mobile Bay Financial, is the only four-legged member of the firm. Bama studied at the University of Alabama and majored in Family Financial Planning, along with Virginia, graduating in 2011. She has been a vital part of the firm since May of 2012. Bama is not only the official mascot of the office but also the official squirrel watcher. Not one squirrel darts by her window that she doesn’t keep a close eye on. Bama enjoys swimming, squirrel hunting, playing fetch, and belly rubs. Bama is proud to be the fifth generation of McNeils to work with the firm.