NTFI Leadership Team

Jim Hill - Owner/ Director

Owner/ Director
PO Box 1588, Monterey CA 93942

831-624-2719 / phone

Jim Hill founded the company in 1986 with just one bulldozer and has built NTFI into one of the most highly regarded emergency response companies in the West..

"The success of our team is built on the dedication of our employees; the greatest equipment cannot be used to its potential without equally great firefighters and operators to handle the equipment in a safe, aggressive and accountable manner."

Mike Armstrong - President and Chief Executive Officer

President and Chief Executive Officer
550 Hartnell St, Suite C, Monterey, CA 93940

831-920-0526 / phone

As the President and Chief Executive Officer for NTFI, Mike serves the Owner/Director and works closely with the company's Board of Advisors to develop and implement successful business strategies.

Mike is a 23-year US Army veteran who served as a combat arms officer and politico-military strategist. He completed two combat tours, served on the Army staff in the Pentagon, and is a graduate of the US Army War College. Following his Army career, he served 16 years as general manager of three water management and water supply agencies in Monterey County, CA.

Mike's professional experiences have focused on executive leadership, management and organizational development. He has led the recruitment and the development of high performing teams; authored and implemented policies and strategies through effective collaboration among diverse interest groups; and, overseen the design and implementation of public works projects for water supply, flood control/flood warning, watershed protection, GIS mapping, environmental review, and enhanced technology platforms.

Mitch Ward - Confined Space Rescue Program Manager

Confined Space Rescue Program Manager

As manager of NTFI's Confined Space Rescue Division, Mitch Ward is responsible for all aspects of our Industrial Rescue Operations. Mr. Ward is also a Heavy Fire Equipment Operator and is dispatched on a Fire Dozer or Water Tender.

Mr. Ward entered the Fire Service in 1982 and is a certified structural and wildland firefighter with Paramedic training and certificates in command, prevention, investigation, hazardous materials, heavy rescue, dive rescue, and breathing air systems. In addition to his over two decades of experience, he is a former member of the Nevada County Sheriff's Search and Rescue Dive Team. He is a licensed SCUBA instructor in multiple specialties including Dive Rescue, Mixed Gas, Overhead Environment, Search and Recovery as well as other disciplines. He is a licensed California Real Estate Broker, has owned and operated several successful businesses, and is currently a small business owner.

Dave Whiteley - Vegetation Management Supervisor

Vegetation Management Supervisor

530-701-0335 / phone

Dave supervises North Tree's Vegetation Management Operations, which include creating fire breaks, defensible space, and road access, and assistance in all aspects of fire prevention and land clearing involving vegetation and forest fire fuels reduction.

Dave is a US Army Veteran having served with the 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam as a Helicopter Crewchief. After leaving the Army he worked for the next 30 years in the Forest Industry specializing in Road and Logging Management, which included experience in all aspects of Forestry practices. He has also operated and maintained road and snow removal equipment including Snow Blowers for Cal Trans.

Dave's Fire experience first began in 1977 operating Water Tenders on wildland fires followed by Dozers as well. Dave has worked for North Tree Fire since 2004 responding to wildland fires and incidents including Railroad Tunnel fires, Derailments and Hurricane Katrina as well as completing many fire prevention projects. Dave has extensive experience operating Water tenders, Dozers, Graders, Transports, Masticators, Excavators and maintaining equipment.

Cathy Moreno - Dispatch Supervisor

Dispatch Supervisor

530-743-7530 / phone

Cathy supervises North Tree Fire's Dispatch Center. Along with her responsibilities of all dispatch related matters, Cathy also supervises the IMS division and is involved in dispatching and coordinating Confined Space Rescue crews for Dept. of Water Resources and Industrial Site Safety assignments.

Cathy has been a member of the NorthTree Fire team since 1997, during this time she functioned as an Engine Captain on a Type 6 engine, IMS Supervisor on Type I & II incidents, and was the Assistant Dispatcher.

She also worked for the U.S. Forest Service 1980 thru 1994. During her career with the Forest Service Cathy worked on an engine crew, helishot crew, hotshot crew and helitack/helirappel crew on the Los Padres and Trinity National Forest.

Mike Filice - Fleet Manager

Fleet Manager

Mr. Mike Filice currently holds the position of Fleet Management Manager for NorthTree Fire International (NTFI). He has extensive experience in fleet management and equipment maintenance. Mr. Filice also works as one of NTFI's top dozer transport operators with many hours of fire line experience. He is responsible for NTFI's BIT and DOT programs that assure high quality operators and equipment certified by the California Highway Patrol and Department of Transportation.

Mr. Filice has been employed by North Tree Ranch for over 25 years as a mechanic and ranch manager.