L-480, Organizational Leadership in the Wildland Fire Service, 2015

L-480 Decorative banner. Three photos depicting wildland fire supervisory positions. Photo of two aviation supervisors hand signal to and incoming aircraft. A firefighter talks on a handheld radio. Two firefighters review something on a tablet.

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This is a leadership development recommendation that will provide mid- and upper-level organizational leaders and future Incident Management Team leaders (Command and General Staff) with the leadership tools to provide strategic direction and influence others to achieve team goals.


The NWCG Leadership Committee has oversight and maintenance responsibility for the L-480 criteria and evaluation process. However, the delivery process used to meet this training recommendation will need to be determined by the hosting agency. Specific course information can be found at the Wildland Fire Leadership website at https://www.nwcg.gov/wfldp.

Selected course materials should address these topics:

  • Communication skills
  • Command presence
  • Situational awareness, vision and change
  • Leadership skills within a team environment
  • Recognition and reward
  • Mentorship, coaching and delegation


  • The intent of this training recommendation is to develop personal leadership skills and command presence to increase effectiveness in the workplace and during incident management operations.

Target Group

Personnel desiring to be qualified as Type 2 Command and General Staff, and mid- to upper-level organizational leaders. 


L-480 is available as classroom instructor-led training.

Course Components and Hours to Complete

Course ComponentCourse Time
Pre-course work8
Pre-selection assessmentN/A
Online trainingN/A
Instructor-led training32
Total Hours40

Session Offerings

Nationally advertised course sessions can be found by searching for L-480 on the National Wildland Fire Training website. Contact your local Training Officer for more information about local course sessions.

Prerequisite Qualifications and Training

  • Successful completion of L-380, Fireline Leadership


  • Successful completion of L-381, Incident Leadership


  • Successful completion of L-180, Human Factors in the Wildland Fire Service; plus completion of 40 hours in any supervision or leadership training course(s)


  • Satisfactory completion of pre-course work.

Course Level

Regional, state, or area


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