As of Jan. 9, Curt Butler has stepped in as the most recent DNR Conservation Warden assigned to southern Lincoln County.
An Oshkosh native, Butler comes to the Merrill area after completing a year of initial training in his new role.
Following graduation from UW-Stevens Point’s Natural Resources-Law Enforcement program, Butler applied to and was selected to enter the DNR’s law enforcement training academy as a Conservation Warden in January of last year. Upon completing the academy course work in June, he progressed to Field Training last summer and fall in Walworth, Rusk and Calumet Counties.
Prior to being selected to his current full-time position, Curt served 2-years as an LTE (Limited Term Employment) Deputy Warden; covering Waupaca, Waushara and Winnebago counties.
“Growing up I always knew I wanted to be involved in law enforcement,” Butler explains, of his motivation to pursue a career in natural resources conservation.
“I also had an interest in natural resources which led me to choose UW-Point’s natural resources program with a focus on enforcement. I think it was a combination of my love of the outdoors as a child and the course work at Point that really developed my interest and decide this was the field I wanted to go into and make a career of.”
Unlike other cases where new wardens entering the field are assigned to various areas around the state, Warden Butler personally selected the Merrill area.
“Of all the open locations around the state, I found Merrill appealing right away due to its central location in the state. I think every warden in Wisconsin comes out of the academy hoping to work in the northwoods and Merrill is literally right on the edge. The more I learned about Merrill the more interested I became and was happy to learn I would be working here.”
Warden Butler will be operating out of both the DNR station at 101 Eagle Drive in Merrill as well as the ranger station at the Council Grounds State Park.
He can be reached via phone at (715) 416-0068 or via email at Michael.Butler@Wisconsin.gov.
Those wishing to report violations anonymously can do so by calling 1-800-847-9367.