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Butler named 2016 Colonel's Battalion Distinguished Alum

COL William J. Butler

EKU Colonel's Battalion is pleased to announce their 2016 Distinguished Alumnus award recipient, COL William J. Butler ('90). COL Butler was honored at the annual ROTC awards ceremony at the end of the spring semester.

COL William J. Butler grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio and was a Distinguished Military Graduate from Eastern Kentucky University, where he was commissioned a Regular Army Second Lieutenant in the Infantry in 1990.

His first assignment was to 3d Battalion, 14th Infantry, 10th Mountain Division (LIGHT), Fort Drum, New York, where he served as a Rifle Platoon Leader and a Mortar Platoon Leader.  He was then assigned to the 3d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort Benning, Georgia, as a Weapons Platoon Leader and Rifle Company Executive Officer. 

Upon completion of the Infantry Officer Advanced Course, he was assigned to the 25th Infantry Division (LIGHT), Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, and served as the 1st Brigade S4, the S3 Air for 2d Battalion, 35th Infantry, and Charlie Company Commander, 2d Battalion, 35th Infantry.  Upon completion of company command, he served in the 75th Ranger Regiment as Regimental Assistant Adjutant.  He commanded Alpha Company, 3d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment and served as the Regimental Public Affairs Officer.

COL Butler attended the Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, and served as Ground Maneuver Planner for the U.S. Army Southern European Task Force, Caserma Ederle, Italy.  He was later assigned to 1st Battalion (Airborne), 508th Infantry, 173d Airborne Brigade as the Battalion Executive Officer in northern Iraq during OIF I.  Upon the Brigade’s redeployment from Iraq, he assumed duties as the Brigade Executive Officer and helped prepare the brigade to deploy to Kandahar, Afghanistan, in support of OEF VI.  Midway thru the deployment, he moved to be the Deputy CJ3 for CJTF-76 at Bagram, Afghanistan.  After redeployment, he was assigned to the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York, as Chief of Military Training.

He commanded 2d Battalion (Airborne), 503d Infantry, 173d Airborne Brigade Combat Team from September 2008 through June 2011 and deployed in support of OEF X in Kunar and Wardak Provinces, Afghanistan.  He and his family were subsequently assigned to the Joint Multinational Readiness Center, Hohenfels, Germany where he was a Task Force Senior Observer-Coach Trainer for a year.  Upon graduation from the U.S. Army War College, he served as the Chief of Training and Leader Development in the Directorate of Training and Doctrine and the Deputy Commandant of the U.S. Army Infantry School at the Maneuver Center of Excellence.  He is currently the Cadet Command Director of Operations.

COL Butler holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History from Eastern Kentucky University, a Master of Science in Education from Troy University, and a Master of Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College.  He is a graduate of the Infantry Officer Basic and Advanced Courses and the Command and General Staff College.  He is a recipient of the Expert Infantryman’s Badge, Combat Infantryman’s Badge, Air Assault Badge, Master Parachutist Badge, German, Dutch, and Italian Airborne Wings, and Ranger Tab.  His awards and decorations include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Commendation Medal, and NATO Medal.

He is married to the former Mindy Howard and they have two college aged kids, Bailey and Will.

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Published on April 25, 2016

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