Mike attended St. John's University earning a degree in medieval English in 1973. After graduation Mike returned to his Iowa hometown and started a general contracting company, initially involved in repairing homes and farm buildings. The company grew, building new homes, confinement livestock systems, and small commercial projects. Mike began to invest in real estate, developing properties and acquiring mostly bankrupt development projects in Omaha. He and his brothers built, owned and operated other local businesses as well.
After turning over the construction company to his brothers in 1984, Mike helped farmers and small business people deal with the 1980's farm crisis. He was also actively involved in the management and sale of real estate, including commercial and agricultural properties in Iowa and Nebraska.
In 1986, Mike and his family moved to Omaha. Mike and his longtime CPA, Rich Jarvis, together formed a new company, McCarthy Group, Inc. They intended to broker businesses, manage money and make investments for themselves and others. That idea, begun with less than $1 million in capital, has become McCarthy Group, LLC.
In 1987, McCarthy & Co. formed an investment bank, and in 1989, McCarthy Group Asset Management, an asset management business, was formed. HMG Realty Advisors and Fulcrum Growth Partners were formed in 1999, and AmeriSphere Multi-Family Finance in 2000. In 2001, the company started a publicly traded mutual fund, the McCarthy Fund (MGAMX), and in 2002, McCarthy Capital Corporation was formed to discover, make and manage investments in private and small public companies.
Mike is Chairman of McCarthy Group, LLC. He also serves on many corporate boards, including Cabela's, Election Systems & Software, Peter Kiewit Sons', Union Pacific Corporation and World's Foremost Bank, He has served as a director on many community boards, including Alegent Health System and Creighton Preparatory High School and currently the Omaha Community Foundation and Heritage Services. In 2006, Mike was elected to the Omaha Business Hall of Fame.
Mike currently lives in the Omaha with his wife Nancy. He has four adult children: Tom, Beth, Dan and Kevin.