MWCD Board of Directors Announces Next Executive Director

February 24, 2020

The Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District (MWCD) Board of Directors is pleased to announce their appointment of Craig W. Butler as the organization’s next Executive Director. Butler will begin his duties with the MWCD on May 1, 2020. Butler will replace John M. Hoopingarner, current MWCD Executive Director. Hoopingarner will retire on May 29, 2020, after more than 30 years of service to the MWCD.

Butler currently serves as the Executive Director of the Power Siting Board for the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio. In 2014, Governor John Kasich, appointed Butler as Director of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a position he held until 2019. Prior to serving as the Director of the EPA, Butler served as the Assistant Policy Director for Energy, Agriculture and the Environment in Governor Kasich’s administration. Prior to his service in the Kasich Administration, Butler served in various positions in the Ohio EPA and is regarded as an innovator and national leader in balancing environmental protection, conservation, public health and economic development issues.

“I am very thankful to MWCD Board President, Joanne Limbach and members of the board for their consideration and trusting me with the responsibility of leading MWCD,” said Butler. “I look forward to working closely with the Board and leading the team of talented MWCD professionals and staff. It is truly an honor and I am very excited to be a part of this extraordinary organization. I look forward to using my experience to support the critical mission of the MWCD and exploring new opportunities to assist communities in the Muskingum River Watershed. I also am appreciative of Governor DeWine’s support of me taking on this new role.”

Butler holds a Bachelor of Arts in Geography and Environmental Studies from Mansfield University in Pennsylvania and a Master of Science in Environmental Studies from Ohio University.

“We’re exceptionally pleased that Craig will be taking on this leadership role,” said Joanne Limbach, MWCD Board President. “Craig’s broad knowledge of environmental issues coupled with his years of experience working in the public sector make him well positioned to lead the organization going forward. His experience in working with the public and business community as well as his track record of being a trusted leader to local, state and federal officials positions him well to hit the ground running and lead the organization,” Limbach added.

As Executive Director, Butler will serve as the chief executive officer and secretary of the MWCD, performing employment duties as prescribed by law under Ohio Revised Code Chapter 6101, as well as advising the Board of Directors on matters related to Chapter 6101 of the Revised Code.  The MWCD Executive Director oversees the effective and efficient operation of the organization and ensures that enhanced services and facilities are offered to the public. The Executive Director is responsible for the overall planning, operation, staff leadership and development, and fiscal management in accordance with the organization’s mission, vision, values and goals.

The MWCD, a political subdivision of the state, was organized in 1933 to develop and implement a plan to reduce flooding and conserve water for beneficial public uses in the Muskingum River Watershed, the largest wholly contained watershed in Ohio. Since their construction, the 16 reservoirs and dams in the MWCD region have been credited for saving over $7 billion worth of potential property damage from flooding, according to the federal government, as well as providing popular recreational opportunities that bolster the region’s economy. A significant portion of the reservoirs are managed by the MWCD and the dams are managed for flood-risk management by the federal U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).

For more information about the MWCD, visit and follow the MWCD on Facebook and Twitter.

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