About Us

Foothill Tree Service was established in 1965 and remains a family operated business to this day focused on safety.

Jim in the 60's

Our Dad, Jim, moved from Idaho to Placerville, California in 1965. At that time he was working as a General Foreman doing commercial line clearance for PG&E. He oversaw the entire tree budget, including Transmission lines, Distribution & all Hydro. He oversaw and managed the safety of 50+ crew members, and was continually rewarded for operating without injuries to his crews or damage to properties.

Before long though, he recognized a need in the residential sector and founded Foothill Tree Service. It started small – just a side business on the weekend, but when those first clients recognized that Jim looked after them like friends – they became life-long clients. It wasn’t long before Jim needed help, and started hiring employees.

The clientele steadily grew. Though Jim didn’t realize it at the time, he had started a legacy – one of safety, of education and of care for our clients

Fifty years later, Foothill Tree Service is still being run by Jim’s family, and still operates with the motto: “Treat our Clients as Friends, and our Employees as Family.” If something goes wrong, WE WILL MAKE IT RIGHT. It is our standard to make sure you’re completely satisfied and we will never offer a service that you don’t need. We rigorously demand only best industry practices from our crews, and are very proud to have reached our goal of becoming accredited by the Tree Care Industry Association (T.C.I.A.)

T.C.I.A. Accreditation is the only program of its kind in the tree care industry, and we are one of a few companies internationally to be accepted by T.C.I.A. The process evaluates businesses to ensure that professional practices and standards are met in every department and at every level of the company. Says Bob Rouse, TCIA’s chief program officer. “It shows customers that this is a model tree care company, the best in the area, and raises the bar for other tree care companies in the area.”

We care deeply about the relationships we develop with our clients and community, and are constantly looking for innovative ways of providing the best possible care for both client and tree. Trees make up a complex part of the local ecology adding beauty, life and balance to the world around us. Anytime we work on a tree, it impacts our community and many aspects of life. We see ourselves as temporary stewards and feel a sense of duty to our environment, to the point that we have adopted “Positively Impacting Humanity Through Innovative Tree Stewardship”  as our mission statement. 

Although the entire Dykstra family works for or has worked for Foothill Tree Service, our employees are INVALUABLE to us. Each one fills a specific role and have truly become extended family, they make it possible to operate our business safely. Below are just a few of them and some of the things they do for us…


CSLB License Numbers: 352887 (C61/D49), 917028 (C27)

ISA Certified Arborist Number: WE5892, WE5893, WE9717A

TCIA Accreditation Number: CA065



Meet Our Staff

James (Jim) Dykstra

Founder, Partially Retired, ISA Certified Arborist, T.R.A.Q.

Jim Dysktra is an ISA Certified Arborist, with the Tree Risk Assessment Qualification (T.R.A.Q.) and a proud member of T.C.I.A.  His experience as a General Foreman at Asplundh Tree honed-in his professional skills. He has brought these along with his safe & responsible work ethic here to Foothill Tree Service. After more than 50 years in the industry, Jim is semi-retired now offering wise counsel to the next generation as a valuable member of the board.

Chad Dykstra

CEO, ISA Certified Arborist, ASCA, T.R.A.Q.

Chad learned the tree care business & culture from his father Jim and is a rich source of knowledge when it comes to the tree care industry. Chad is the qualifying officer for Foothill’s C-27 landscape contractor’s license and is proud that Foothill Tree properly installs hundreds of trees each year for our customers.

He is an ISA Certified Arborist, has a Tree Risk Assessment Qualification (T.R.A.Q.) from the ISA and is a member of the American Society of Consulting Arborists. When he comes to your property, you can be assured that he is sharing the most up to date, scientific knowledge available in the tree care industry and that he will perform the work safely around your home. He has expertise in tree health evaluation as well as tree appraisal, fire loss valuations, and all types of tree related insurance claims. He provides Expert Witness testimony and works as a consulting forensic expert. As of 2017, Chad is officially the owner of Foothill Tree Service and is excited about all of the opportunities the company is pursuing.

Wes Kohutek

Plant Health Care Manager

Wes began his horticultural career at The Front Yard Nursery in Placerville while pursuing a degree in education and fell in love with the world of plants. He started working at Front Yard Nursery in 2005, as a yard worker, working his way up to general manager and was a part of their team until its closing at the end of 2019. During this time, he was able to work with many amazing customers and professionals in the industry, which allowed him to grow as a horticulturist.

Wes was born and raised in El Dorado county and is proud to raise his family here and pass on his love for horticulture as he continues to grow in the field.

We were very excited to add Wes to our team in 2019. You may recognize him from his long-time job at Front Yard Nursery.  He brings a wealth of knowledge to our team. With his friendly customer service skills, trustworthiness, and passion for plant health care, we knew he would be a great fit in our Foothill Tree family.

Elizabeth (Ellie) Zink

General Tree Care Production Manager

Ellie, like the rest of our team, is integral. Her personal values line up perfectly with the values of Foothill Tree. We trust her (and the entire Customer Care Team) to communicate our values to all our potential and existing clients. She manages the day-to-day Customer Care functions and scheduling, as well as administrates Production. Ellie has a varied background of experience including: Marketing, Photographer, Community outreach and connection, Grant Coordination, and Worker’s Comp. insurance sales. With all of this experience, we thought it made her perfect for the demands of this job. Her extensive professional background makes Ellie a valuable contributor to every department we have.

Mary Groseclose

Mary moved here in 1994 from Phoenix, AZ.  She completed college with multiple degrees and worked in the medical field for 16 years.  Wanting a complete change in occupation, she came to us and completed our company.  She has one son, who is married with 2 beautiful grandchildren that live close by so she can see them regularly.

Robert Dulinski

Operations Manager

After leaving TESLA for a more country feel, Rob joined Foothill Tree in 2019 as our Operations Manager. Rob brings an extensive background in operations management and customer service from manufacturing, automotive and healthcare industries. He and his family were drawn to the foothills because of our beautiful landscape and passion for our environment, which he shares. He loves the opportunity to work in the great outdoors as part of the Foothill Tree team.

Phil Johnson

Phil was raised in Redding, California and in 1994 he made the decision to move his family to the bay area to pursue a career in arboriculture. He started working for a large national commercial landscape and tree care company as a supervisor.  In 2000 he became an ISA certified arborist and moved to the Sacramento area, where he continued in management until 2016 when he started my own tree care business. He became a part of our team in 2019. We highly value his experience and his contribution as a certified arborist. In his spare time he enjoys hiking, off-roading and drag racing with wife, children and granddaughter.

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