Michael Boutté was born in Los Angeles, California, and was raised in the Leimert Park district until he was five years old. One day while at home from kindergarten, he and his family were victims of a house fire. Michael and his family were able to escape safely. Michael recalls watching the firefighters extinguish and salvage his house from across the street. From that point on, Michael knew his calling was to be a firefighter.
The Boutté family then moved to the South Bay and Michael attended Bishop Montgomery High School in Torrance. In high school, Michael played volleyball, football and was the student body president his senior year. He attended the University of Southern California, which is where he met his wife, and graduated with a Bachelors of Arts in International Relations. In his senior year Michael began to pursue a career in firefighting with the help of the Stentorians by participating in their weekend workshops on how to become a firefighter.
During and after college Michael worked for Bank of America and was promoted to a personal banker. After becoming a teller coordinator at the bank, Michael went back to school to pursue firefighting full time. He became an EMT through El Camino College, where he also graduated from their fire academy. Shortly after the academy Michael got accepted and completed the UCLA Paramedic program. Michael’s dreams came true when the Los Angeles Fire Department hired him in 2008. He immediately became a Stentorian and a member of the African American Firefighter Museum.
Michael has been volunteering for the museum since he was a rookie. He is also a volunteer and mentor with the Junior Firefighter Youth Program and Junior Fire Cadet Program. He is a regular guest speaker for Project LEAD, a program established by Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office that teaches 5th graders in inner-city schools about the criminal justice system and how to make better decisions in life.
Michael has been on the Board of Directors of the Museum as the Los Angeles City Stentorian Liaison and is the newly appointed Treasurer. He enjoys traveling with his wife around the world, especially visiting Panama, where they recently got married. He also enjoys cooking, gardening and hiking with his wife and three dogs.