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Jeff Klatt takes over as sheriff's patrol captain

Jeff Klatt was named patrol captain at the St. Croix County Sheriff's office in January. He makes no effort to hide his devotion to the Green Bay Packers with Brett Favre memorabilia on the wall in his office. Photo by Jon Echternacht

You might say Jeff Klatt was destined to be a law enforcement officer of some kind. At least he can't remember wanting to do anything else as far back as his childhood.

The 44-year-old Glenwood City native officially took over the patrol captain position Jan. 18 to fill a vacancy when Scott Knudson moved up to chief deputy and John Shilts assumed the sheriff's job this year after winning the November election.

"I wanted to be a cop ever since I was a kid," Klatt said during a recent conversation in his office. "I remember watching 'Adam 12' on television."

After he graduated from Glenwood High School in 1985, Klatt attended Chippewa Valley Tech and earned an associated degree in law enforcement in 1988.

"My first real job was working part-time with the Glenwood City Police Department for Chief Ray Ista when I was in (tech) school," he said.

Klatt, who joined the sheriff's department in 1989, climbed up the ladder in the natural progression that was common for a new officer. He started in the jail in 1989 then moved to patrol. He made sergeant in 2006 and lieutenant in 2008.

With the changing of the guard when Shilts was sworn in as sheriff Jan. 3, Klatt was temporarily named to the captain's possession until it was made official.

"The best part of the job is working with the people here," Klatt said. "We have a good crew."

The worst part of the job is the 3 a.m. phone calls to duty, he said.

He said his new job carries more responsibility and he has run into a few bumps but, "The guys have been patient with me."

Klatt will soon achieve a bachelor's degree in public administration. He is taking the course through Upper Iowa University on line.

Klatt is single and devotes his leisure time to deer hunting, camping and taking his ATV on excursions. He lives in Wilson where he owns 40 acres that provide him with deer hunting land.

He is also a devoted Green Bay Packer fan. His office wall is covered with former quarterback Brett Favre memorabilia and he is seeking out a piece featuring current quarterback and Super Bowl MVP Aaron Rodgers before the price gets prohibitive.