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1940 John Douglas "Doug" Haag 2023

John Douglas Haag

July 19, 1940 — December 24, 2023



Middleton:  John Douglas (Doug) Haag passed away December 24, 2023 in Madison.  He was born July 19, 1940 in Willmar, MN to Hilding and Mabel Haag. 

The Haag family moved from Willmar, MN to Madison, WI in 1941. Doug graduated from Madison West High School in 1958 and he began his freshman year at the University of Wisconsin. He was a member of the UW Crew for four years and he became a life member of the National W Club.  

On September 23, 1960, Doug first met and dated Judi Shelby. Doug was beginning his junior year at the UW and Judi her sophomore year. When Doug saw Judi, he thought she was the most beautiful girl he had ever seen–blonde, dark blue eyes and a radiant smile. Doug soon found out that not only was Judi beautiful, she was sweet and kind and thoughtful and that’s when their lifelong love began. Doug would forever call that day, “the luckiest day of my life.” After their second date, Judi told her best friend Bonnie Babcock that she knew Doug was her soulmate and she wanted to marry him someday. Bonnie was her Maid of Honor on June 24, 1967. Judi and Doug were married for more than 55 years.  

In June 1962, Doug graduated with honors, with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Economics and a 2nd Lt. Commission in US Army Intelligence. He spent the next two years on active duty in the US Army and he was promoted to Captain while in the US Army Reserves.  

Following active duty in the US Army, Doug entered UW Law School in 1964. He graduated from law school in 1967 and he began his legal career as counsel in the Chicago office of the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission. In 1972, Doug was offered and accepted the position of Assistant Attorney General in the Criminal Prosecution Unit of the Wisconsin Department of Justice.  

Doug spent the next 29 years investigating and prosecuting criminal cases. He was promoted to Director of the Criminal Litigation Unit during the tenure of two Wisconsin Attorneys General; he found the legal work that he believed he was meant to do. He was afforded the opportunity to work in the majority of Wisconsin’s 72 counties and to investigate and try many high-profile criminal cases.  After retirement from the DOJ in 2000, Doug spent another 13 years part-time under contract with the Wisconsin Ethics Board and Government Accountability Board investigating allegations of public corruption.  

Judi and Doug had four children, Kristin, Eric, Kari and Trina and they all went on to have successful careers that made their parents proud. While growing up, vacations were always a family affair.  Horseback riding and fly fishing were at the top of the list. For nine years in a row, the family did both at a ranch in Montana. The girls learned to ride horses because their mother was an expert who trained them well. Eric became an expert fly fisherman in Montana’s fast trout waters. The family often spent spring break with Judi’s parents in Florida.  

The family also had a cabin in Waushara County built by Doug’s father, Hilding Haag. It was a wonderful place to fish trout and hunt deer, having two trout streams on it. The family spent many wonderful days there.  Judi and Doug lived there for a year and a half while their new house was being built in Middleton. Since then, Eric has built a beautiful, modern cabin for his family on this property. 


Judi and Doug valued their Christian faith and they were confirmed members of Bethel Lutheran Church for many years. Judi cared for babies and toddlers in the church nursery and Doug was President of the Church Council.  

Doug was preceded in death by his parents (Hilding and Mabel), his wife (Judi), and his brother (Tom).  He is survived by his four children, nine grandchildren and his son-in-law and daughter-in-law.  

A private family service will be held at the Haag residence.  In lieu of flowers, memorials in Doug’s name may be made to Golden Retriever Rescue of Wisconsin or a charity of donor’s  choice.


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