We created the Carolina Arborist Group (CAG) in 2020 with the merger of two long-standing tree service companies. AJ’s Tree and Stump Service and Triangle Tree Care were successful sole proprietorships with their owner as principal climber. With 25-30 years of experience each, Wayne Jordan and Todd Cates bring extraordinary technical expertise and acumen to CAG.
Looking to expand their companies’ services further into commercial and government work, Wayne and Todd partnered with an experienced manager and entrepreneur to lead the growing business. With Christy Raulli joining the team as majority owner, CAG is proud to be a woman-owned firm in a heavily male dominated industry.
CAG is based in Hillsborough, NC, with a trade area that includes Alamance, Orange, Durham, Wake, Chatham, Caswell and Person Counties. We regularly travel throughout North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia to assist with emergency and storm clean-up.
I started working with Wilson Tree Company in 1989 just out of high school. At that age, I loved the sense of exhilaration I got when climbing. Soon after, I moved to Davie Tree Experts, they sent me to arbor school in the midwest for 20 weeks of intense education and skill building. As part of an international cohort of 45 students, I learned everything from proper pruning and tree ID, to climbing and felling. My memories of that time are of great teachers and cold weather! I worked with Davie for 6 years as a climber and jobsite foreman clearing easements with a high production traveling crew. When the major contract I worked under moved to Asplundh, I did, too, and continued running the utility clearing crew for another 6 years. We traveled nearly constantly for storm clean-up, and were always working near live electric lines, so the work was tense and dangerous.
In 1995, I got married and started my own business so I could come off the road and settle down. I shifted to residential work, and enjoyed the slower pace and lower stress jobs for about 10 years. When two good employees asked if they could buy the business from me, I agreed and went back to utility work for a few years before starting AJ’s Tree and Stump Service in 2009.
Merging my company with Triangle Tree Care allows us to expand our services to include bigger jobs in government and commercial sectors with strong back office support. I’ve seen the impact a long-term contract can have on a company and its ability to grow, and feel that is the best way to keep the company sustainable for the next generation.
After months of conversation, I left my big city job running a real estate development company to form Carolina Arborist Group with two talented and experienced tree climbers. It’s hard to run a business from the top of a tree, they said, and they needed a manager and entrepreneur to chart the course for the next phase of their combined businesses. I bring experience with public, private business management, government contracting, and customer service to the tree industry. As majority owner of the company, job site safety is my priority and a constant emphasis in all of our work.
I started climbing with AJ’s Tree and Stump Service at 16 during summers and school breaks. I think highly skilled climbers are a dying breed, and I want to ensure that Carolina Arborist Group continues to provide expert technical service to our customers.
After several years of full-time tree work, I was promoted to Foreman in 2020. I run the crew on the jobsite, and enjoy setting an example for how to be safe, hard-working and appreciative of the team.
Quentin has worked on and off for Wayne for the past 14 years, and finally agreed to join the team full time as ground crew supervisor in 2020. Don’t let his quiet demeanor fool you, Quentin’s attention to detail and ability to get the job done are unsurpassed.
Thirty years ago a good friend and I started rock climbing for a hobby. That hobby expanded into caving, extreme rappels of up to several thousand feet, extreme rope swings and recreational tree climbing. Friends and family recruited us to perform tree work with our rock climbing gear, and I soon began working for other tree services companies as an employee or skilled contract climber.
As a former climber for a large, highly-respected tree company, I was well trained in all aspects of modern tree care and safety. Running my own company I exceled far beyond the skill set required to work for the big companies. As the only climber for my own small tree business I have always taken my career very seriously. It has been a dream come true to turn my hobby into a challenging and satisfying way to make a living.
I turned my focus to creating a long-lasting company and training the next generation of top-notch climbers when merging with AJ’s Tree and Stump Service. I’m now mostly retired and glad to know my customers are in good hands with Carolina Arborist Group.
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