Croninger named Wisconsin’s top prosecutor
Following in his predecessor’s footsteps, Monroe County District Attorney Kevin Croninger recently became a member of an elite group.
In January, the Wisconsin District Attorneys Association (WDAA) named Croninger its 2020 Prosecutor of the Year, an honor given to only one of the state’s many prosecutors each year.
The WDAA represents over 500 district attorneys, deputy district attorneys and assistant district attorneys across the state.
It is only the second time that a district attorney from Monroe County has received the distinction. The late Dan Cary, who Croninger served under as an assistant DA, won the award in 2012.
“For me that just enhances it to win the same award he did,” said Croninger. “I’ve looked up to Dan and tried to emulate a lot of the things he did. He was certainly a person who deserved to win it and probably should have won it more than just the one time he did.”
Sparta Police Chief Emilee Nottestad, Sparta Police Sergeant Kyle Erickson and Monroe County Assistant District Attorney Sarah Skiles nominated Croninger for the award.
Skiles pointed to the significant impact Croninger has on the criminal legal system as District Attorney.
“Kevin is not one to back away from a tough fight, in fact he may enjoy it, and he is a fierce litigator,” she said in her nomination letter. “Kevin is a dedicated crime-fighter who is devoted to protecting and bettering the community and seeing justice done. He is a tremendous asset to Monroe County and the state as District Attorney.”
Both Nottestad and Erickson pointed to his dedication to the citizens of Monroe County through his willingness to take on difficult cases and support law enforcement.
Croninger began his career as an assistant prosecutor in Juneau County in 2010, before coming to Monroe County in 2011.
He was appointed District Attorney in January 2014 after Cary’s untimely death. He was reelected to his third four-year term last November.
“It’s an incredible honor and very humbling,” he said of receiving the award. “I think it reflects on the work of my office and law enforcement probably more so than anything I’ve personally done.”
“Our office, with the tremendous staff we have, strives to provide a high level of service to the people of Monroe County and I think this award demonstrates we’ve been successful in doing that,” he continued. “Part of it, which makes it even more humbling, is to have people who are top notch in their field to make those nominations. It means a lot.”
Croninger along with three of his staff were also recognized for their work in 2017. Croninger was awarded the Outstanding Victim Advocacy by a Professional Award from the Wisconsin Victim/Witness Professional Association, while staffers were awarded one Outstanding Victim Advocacy by a Victim Advocate and two Honorable Mention for Outstanding Victim Advocacy from the Wisconsin Victim/Witness Professional Association.