John Butler was born in San Antonio, Texas, the son of a career Air Force father and a Registered Nurse mother. The Air Force moved his family around frequently, and John lived in Texas, Indiana, Alaska, Arkansas before finishing high school. His summers from age 11 to 17 were spent on his grandfather's farm in southeastern Minnesota. This Midwestern agricultural experience led him to Iowa State University and a B.S. in Agricultural Business. Over the next 23 years, John purchased, ran, and sold several grain elevators.
John later attended the University of Illinois and became a CPA in 1992. Subsequent job experiences included Controller for a scrap metal business and CFO for a commodity hedging firm. In 2000, John went into business for himself again in the personal financial services field.
John married Mary Ellen McHugh in the spring of 1975 and have two children. Their son Michael lives in Oak Park, IL, and has two children: Luke, 17, and Reagan, 14. Their daughter Amanda lives in Wheat Ridge, CO, and has two children: Sam, 10, and Elener (Ellie), 7, both students at Augustine Christian Academy.