Rockport fire chief to retire; 60 applications received
Rockport — Longtime Rockport Fire Chief Bruce Woodward is set to retire in March following decades of service to the town. Town officials advertised the position starting in mid-December and asked applications be submitted by Jan. 10.
Town Manager Robert Peabody said as of the deadline, 60 applications had been received, "from as far away as Alaska. Quite a few from New England, some from Maine, a few local." He described the number of applications as daunting to initially sift through but also "an excess of goodness."
He said an existing committee will review the applications starting this week and proceed to arrange interviews with potential candidates. The committee is made up of Peabody and Rockland Fire Chief Charles Jordan as well as Rockport firefighters Charlie Pearson, John Wickenden and Bill Lane, according to the town manager's office.
Peabody said he has not yet set a timeline for hiring the new chief but is confident the department is in good hands should there be a gap between Woodward's retirement and the start date of a new chief.
According to advertising placed in several local publications, the town is seeking a new chief with "considerable experience both administratively and in incident management including experience as a fire service officer." The chief is responsible for supervising approximately 30 volunteer firefighters and is the only full-time employee of the department.
Rockport has a fire station on Main Street that is combined with the police station as well as an unmanned station in West Rockport at the intersection of Routes 17 and 90.