Conservation Department promotes Barton to Protection District Supervisor

News from the region
Published Date

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) announces the promotion of Billy Barton of Iron County to Protection District Supervisor. In his new duties, Barton now supervises conservation agents in Iron, Reynolds, Wayne and Butler Counties.

"Through his work history and experience, Billy brings the necessary leadership skills to assume this role," said Ken West, the Protection Regional Supervisor for MDC's southeast region. "He exhibits several character traits indicative of true leaders, including honesty and approachability."

Barton earned his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Criminology from Drury University, in Springfield, Mo., in 2005. He was then selected for the 2006 Conservation Agent Training class and has since served as the Iron County conservation agent. MDC has twice named Barton as the Outstanding Conservation Agent for Southeast Region, in 2009 and 2015.

"Billy exudes a true servant leader attitude, which will serve him well in his new assignment," West said.

Barton has extensive training to prepare him for the District Supervisor position, including Police Instructor School, IHEA Hunting Incident Investigation School, Missouri National Archery in the Schools (MoNASP) Instructor Training, PPCT Spontaneous Knife Defense Instructor School, Glock Armorer's School, Supervisor 101, and Swift Water Rescue I.

Conservation agents are licensed peace officers of the State of Missouri who are charged with enforcing the rules of the Wildlife Code of Missouri and other state and federal laws according to the Constitution of Missouri and various statutes. The duties of a conservation agent are extremely broad and vary with the season. During warmer months an agent may check fishing permits and creel limits, try to catch a violator operating an illegal net or fish trap, or arrest a person who is using a speargun to take fish illegally. Once fall arrives, the majority of their efforts are geared toward hunting and trapping enforcement. Patrol and stakeouts are a normal part of the job, as is a certain amount of administrative work. Agents also have many other duties in the areas of wildlife, fisheries and forestry management.

Barton will continue to fulfil conservation agent duties in Iron County until a new agent is assigned. He can be reached at (573)466-9119. To learn more about Missouri conservation agents, go online to