SUMNER — Voters at town meeting Saturday re-elected an incumbent selectman and voted in a new member of the RSU 10 board of directors. 

Walter Litchfield, 66, won a new three-year term on the select board, getting 43 votes to the 19 won by his opponent, Clifford McNeil. Voters cast ballots during the meeting. 

In a short address to residents before the vote, Litchfield said he looked forward to another term on the board if he won the election. 

Litchfield won a seat on the board in a 2011 special election to fill the term of Mark Silber after the longtime selectman resigned. This will be his first full term on the board. 

A retired teacher, Litchfield has been an active member of the Sumner Fire Department for more than 20 years and is a former fire chief. In an interview last week, he said addressing the condition of the town’s road network is one of the most important issues facing selectmen. 

Townspeople opted for new representation on the RSU 10 board, electing David Lynch, 38, to a three-year term. Lynch won 53 votes to the five votes cast for incumbent school board member John Phillips. 


Lynch, a teacher at Gould Academy in Bethel, told residents that he and his wife had moved to Sumner relatively recently. He  always intended to become involved in town affairs when he found a place to finally settle down, he said. 

Phillips did not speak at the meeting. 

One resident asked what the candidates’ thoughts were on the town’s possible withdrawal from RSU 10. Lynch said he would have to become better informed about the issue before taking a position on it. 

A group of residents in support of pulling Sumner out of the 12-town school district submitted a withdrawal petition with 98 signatures to the Board of Selectmen in June. Residents are expected to vote on the petition in November.

Neighboring Buckfield is also pursuing withdrawal from RSU 10. Both towns were part of the former SAD 39 before it was consolidated into the larger district in 2009. 

Fire Chief Robert Stewart asked Lynch if he intended to attend select board meetings and keep the town informed about school district business. 

“I’d like to keep people informed,” Lynch said, “I think it’s critical to doing any job like that.”

Voters also re-elected Road Commissioner James Keach to his post with 57 votes. Keach ran unopposed.

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