John began his professional career in 1982 at Procter & Gamble, where he was a warehousing and distribution manager and a lead recruiter for new managers. While in college and at P&G, he earned an Army Officer Commission and served in the Missouri Army National Guard and the United States Army Reserves.
In 1986, John participated in a leveraged buyout of Cape Electrical Supply, a wholesale distributor of electrical supplies throughout the Midwest. He served as President for nine years and then remained a passive owner after recruiting and building the management team that lead the company through two decades of expansion and growth. A controlling interest in the business was sold in 2007 to Svoboda Collins, a Chicago based private equity group, in an $80 million transaction facilitated by investment banker, Harris Williams & Co.
The Daniel Family Office was established to invest the proceeds of the sale, typically in the form of early stage equity or convertible debt. Current investments are across multiple industries including medical software, urgent care medical service, biotech pharmaceutical, prison security technology, smart grid technology, integrated payment processing, revenue cycle management, exchange traded fund management, debt acquisition & receivables management, self-storage facilities, hotel operations, commercial real estate, a regional transportation network, and a variety of specialty hedge funds. Many of these private illiquid investments have been as a co-lead investor with Mayson Capital.
After he learned that his twin daughters were autistic, John initiated the JDFF Wealth Preservation Fund. The endowment strategy fund invests in a diversified portfolio of out of the mainstream liquid assets in an effort to maintain long term purchasing power for the lifelong care of the twins. The closely held fund also gives family and friends the option to have their investments managed side by side with his own liquid investment portfolio.
John was a college basketball coach at Washington University and at Southeast Missouri State University. He left college coaching after six years to participate in the development of Saxony Lutheran High School in Jackson, Missouri, where he served as the school’s first Director of Enrollment, Athletic Director, and Basketball Coach. He also coached Trinity Lutheran School, and his daughter Tess, to the National Lutheran Grade School Championship.
John earned an MBA from Harvard in 1987 and a BS in Engineering Management from the Missouri University of Science and Technology in 1982. He has been trained and commissioned as a Stephen Minister at St. Andrew Lutheran Church. He served on the Board of Directors of Lutheran Family & Children’s Services and the Lutheran Chapel of Hope. He founded the Cape Girardeau Chapter of Volunteers for Income Tax Assistance, an organization that helps the disadvantaged and elderly file income tax returns.
John’s father and grandfather were Lutheran Pastors. He was raised in St. Louis and Cape Girardeau, Missouri as one of nine children, and now lives in Cape Girardeau with his wife, Kim, and six children: Maci, Tess, Ben, Luke, and the twins, Audrey and Anna.