Dean Butler is an American movie and television actor and producer of entertainment, sports and documentary programming.
Raised in Piedmont, California, he studied Communication Arts at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California.
His career as an actor started with a small part on the TV series The Streets of San Francisco. His first major role was in the 1978 TV movie Forever, based on Judy Blume’s novel of the same title.
Butler is best known for his portrayal of Almanzo Wilder on the NBC family drama Little House on the Prairie, which was based on the classic Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder. After Little House he played Jeff "Moondoggie" Griffin in the TV series The New Gidget and Buffy’s dad, Hank Summers, on Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
During the 1980s and 1990s Butler was a guest star on TV series including Murder, She Wrote, Who's the Boss?, The Love Boat and JAG. He co-starred with the late Gary Coleman in The Kid with the 200 I.Q.. On the big screen Butler starred in Desert Hearts and later in The Final Goal.
On the stage Dean performed in the shows of Stephen Sondheim.