Director of Planning,
Mary Lou is the Director of Planning and a Client Advisor for Bragg Financial Advisors. She also serves as a member of the Leadership Team. Mary Lou provides retirement, estate, investment, tax, and financial planning services to clients. Before joining Bragg Financial in the spring of 2011, Mary Lou worked as a CPA, providing tax services to various clients, including other solo CPA practitioners.
Mary Lou earned her BA in Economics from Davidson College in 1988 and her North Carolina CPA designation in 1989. While working at Price Waterhouse in their tax department, she attended night school at the University of Hartford and received her Master's in Professional Accounting with a concentration in tax. Mary Lou has more than thirty years of tax experience and is a member of the North Carolina Association of Certified Public Accountants and the AICPA.
Originally from Huntington, West Virginia, Mary Lou grew up with a father who served as a Presbyterian minister and a mother who was a teacher. These influences guide her passion for providing financial education to individuals in need. Mary Lou teaches financial literacy primarily to high school students and at-risk parents. Some of the groups she works with include Right Moves for Youth, North Carolina Council for Economic Education, and NC Teachers.
Mary Lou is married and has two sons. Her oldest, Michael, graduated magna cum laude from Wake Forest and earned his Master's in Behavioral and Decision Sciences from the University of Pennsylvania. He now works for the Center for Advanced Hindsight, a behavioral research think tank funded by Duke University. Tyler, her youngest, earned his degree in psychology from the University of Richmond and is pursuing his Master's in Social Work at the University of South Carolina. He hopes to work with youth struggling with anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts.
In her free time, Mary Lou enjoys reading, yoga, cycling, hiking, paddle boarding, and learning more about lifestyle impacts on Alzheimer's. She is actively involved at Covenant Presbyterian Church. Mary Lou and her husband, Michael, are also the hosts of the annual Bragg Poker Party.
- Director of Planning
- Member of Leadership Team
- Client Advisor
- Tax Specialist
Education & Professional Experience
- BA Economics, Davidson College
- MSPA Accounting, University of Hartford
- CPA – Certified Public Accountant
- CFP® – Certified Financial Planner
- 35 years industry experience
- 12 years on Bragg team
- Price Waterhouse – Tax Department
- CPA Practitioner
- Attending games and cheering on my Davidson Wildcats
- Paddle boarding
- My Granddog Leo
- Memory & Movement Charlotte: Board Member
- North Carolina Association of CPAs: Member
- AICPA: Member
- Covenant Presbyterian Church: Elder, Leader of the Women's Breakfast, Past Education Chair, former member of Personnel Committee, former member of Associate Pastor Search Committee
- Church In Vocation: Member
- Women's Impact Fund: Member
- Money Smart Week: Former Board Member
- CommonWealth Charlotte: Former Board Member
- The Learning Collaborative, a non-profit NAEYC accredited preschool for at-risk children: Former board member and Treasurer
- Financial Planning Association, Charlotte Chapter: Former Pro-Bono Director, Former Board Member