Gary B. Butler

Inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2018

Gary B. Butler served the State of Wyoming for 40 years with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, beginning as a check station attendant and fish warden, then biologist, and as the statewide supervisor for the Terrestrial Habitat Division.

Born and raised in Gillette, Butler spent much of his childhood learning hunting skills with his father, uncles and their friends, while also training horses, fixing fences, and doing other ranch work.  After high school, Butler enrolled at Casper College. In 1967, Butler was drafted into the Army and was trained as a military policeman. Serving two tours of duty in Vietnam, he then returned home, and obtained a bachelor’s degree in wildlife management from the University of Wyoming, then returned to earn a master’s degree in range management. He married his wife, Jo, in 1971.  

Much of Butler’s career was spent in the field conducting studies on alternatives of feeding hay to elk on the National Elk Refuge, and two elk feedgrounds near Jackson, then managing the world-famous Whiskey Mountain bighorn sheep herd. There, he pioneered new range survey and winter habitat improvement techniques for bighorns and elk; and was instrumental in the trapping and translocation of bighorn sheep to re-occupy historical ranges in Wyoming and other western states. He initiated the Whiskey Mountain Bighorn Sheep Technical Committee, which remains active today. In 1986, Butler served as statewide supervisor for the Terrestrial Habitat Division until his retirement in 2012. Butler worked in Laramie, Jackson, Dayton, Lovell and Dubois, before transferring to the Game and Fish Headquarters in Cheyenne.  

For over 45 years, Gary’s life-long passion has been visiting the vast Wyoming back country with his horses. In 2005, he rode across the state of Wyoming, from Richards Gap, Utah, to Cooke City, Montana—a 736 mile journey—with a number of friends joining him for the trip.   Gary is a lifetime member of the National Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and both the National and Wyoming Wild Sheep Foundations. The Bulters have two children, Scott and Toni, along with two grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Today, Butler keeps his retirement years filled with outdoor pursuits, including gardening, training and caring for his small herd of Morgan horses and serving his church in eastern Laramie County. We congratulate Gary B. Butler for his induction to the 2018 Wyoming Outdoor Hall of Fame.


← Back to Hall of Fame

Nomination Form

For questions, contact Sara DiRienzo
at (307) 777-4540.
Email Newsletter

Email Newsletter Sign Up

Stay up to date on all Wyoming Game and Fish news either by email or text message. Click the link below to get started.

Sign Up Today


Conserving Wildlife - Serving People