MONTICELLO, Utah (ABC4 News) – This year marks the 50th anniversary of women in the FBI, and their roles in the bureau continue to improve today. One of the women breaking barriers in the FBI is right here in Utah. ABC4 News looks at how she’s making a name for herself, in this edition of Behind The Badge.

Being an FBI special agent isn’t just a dream in a man’s world.

“I don’t think it’s hurt being female in this job,” said FBI Agent Rachel Butler.  

FBI Special Agent Rachel Butler in the Utah field office has been breaking barriers for women over the last 16 years.  

“There’s a place for women in this organization. There are things we can do that men can’t necessarily do,” said Butler.


What Agent Butler has done puts her in a class by herself. As a working mom who adopted two teenage boys, she became the first female on the FBI SWAT team, both in Boston and Salt Lake City, and in 2015 she was the only female on the FBI Director’s protection detail.

“Women have the capacity to take on this job, just as well as any man,” Butler said.

Butler now works in Monticello investigating crimes in Indian country, similar to actor Val Kilmer’s character portraying an FBI agent in the movie “Thunderheart.” Just like in the movie she’s developed relationships with her Native American counterparts.  

“The FBI can’t do its job all by itself. We need the locals we need our tribal counterparts; we need the state, we need everyone working together to solve a lot of these crimes,” she said.

Butler attributes part of her success to staying in peak physical condition, which she admits comes in handy dealing with language and cultural barriers.

“We were teaching some Tunisian military folks and one of the things I did was on the first day I challenged everyone to do pushups with me,” said Butler.

A challenge she gave to ABC4’s Brian Carlson too.


“It helps to connect with people. Sometimes words don’t it, words don’t give you the connection, but you know if you do a couple of pushups with somebody, they’ll immediately be willing to listen to what you have to say,” she said.

For women considering becoming an FBI agent, she said the job has its demands, but it’s not one that just belongs to the boys.

Bulter believes any woman can get in FBI shape or learn things like shooting a gun. For a time, she taught at the FBI academy, and shooting a firearm is one thing they train new recruits to do. Women interested in applying just online to fbijobs.gov.