Newly named Oxford Police Chief Rickie Jack, left, receives his insignia and badge from his wife, Candice Jack, as Town Manager Adam Garland looks on. Nicole Carter/Advertiser Democrat

OXFORD — Attendees of the Oxford Select Board meeting Thursday gave a standing ovation after Rickie Jack received his chief of police and rank insignia and badge, pinned by his wife, Candice Jack.

Jack’s family, fellow officers and his recently retired boss, Michael Ward, were on hand as the official announcement was made.

“We received candidates from both outside and internally,” said Town Manager Adam Garland. “After going through the process, Rickie Jack is the one that was by far the preferred candidate and the most qualified. So … Rickie Jack will be Oxford’s police chief moving forward. I’m very excited to work with him in this position.”

The new chief showed gratitude for his new position.

“Going through this process the past few weeks, the amount of support I’ve gotten from the community has been very humbling to me,” Jack said. “I appreciate all of it from everybody and I really look forward to working with the board. Thank you.”

“I started working here in 1997 and I worked with Rickie from that time until I left in 2005,” Selectman Sharon Jackson said. “I can’t think of a finer person for chief.”


Business then turned to more routine appointments, including for the budget committee, Chris Bilodeau to be Oxford’s alternate code enforcement officer/plumbing inspector, and selection of a new select board chair and vice chair.

Chairman Caldwell Jackson nominated Vice Chair Sharon Jackson to take over his board leadership role for the new one-year session.

“I believe it’s reasonable to have one selectman every year be chair,” Caldwell Jackson said. “To find out what it’s like. For that reason I nominate Sharon.”

After the rest of the board voted to confirm Jackson, Caldwell Jackson then nominated Selectman Dana Dillingham as vice chair. That vote was also unanimous.

Oxford Historical Society President Patricia Larrivee addressed the board about accepting a donation of the one-room Pigeon Hill Schoolhouse, which was built in 1867 and attended by numerous generations of Oxford children until it closed in 1940. It stands on a property along state Route 26 across from Oxford Casino and Hotel. It is in the process of being sold by the Thurlow family, who meant for the building to be donated to the historical society.

If it cannot be moved, the developer who now owns the land will demolish it.


“We want to place this schoolhouse on Maine’s historic register and see it protected as a valuable resource,” Larrivee said. “I ask the board of selectmen, who represent the people in the town of Oxford to have forward wisdom and vision along with the society and help us save this 155-year-old schoolhouse.”

Larrivee explained that the historical society wishes to have the building moved to its headquarters at the Kay House Museum on Pleasant Street, and be incorporated into the organization’s archival property and used for educational and community events. The society is not asking the town to provide any financial support, but since the Kay House is town-owned property, the historical society’s board needs input and acceptance from the town.

The school’s furnishings are on display at the Kay House Museum already.

Jackson wanted to know what the timing will be to move and renovate the school house.

“It’s not a very nice looking building,” she said. “It looks like an old building, gray and everything. To sit it right there in the village, it’s going to be an eyesore. So how long do you anticipate it will be before anything is done to it?”

Larrivee said the historical society and Oxford Historic Preservation Committee will fundraise and apply for grants to restore the schoolhouse, but as of yet have not determined a timeline.


Caldwell Jackson questioned what the process would be to accept the donation and if it would require a town meeting vote. Garland said he would talk with the town attorney to find out what the legalities will be to pursue the plan, which the board authorized him to do.

In other business, Garland reported that he is finalizing the purchase and sale agreement with Stephens Memorial Hospital to acquire the hospital’s office building at 127 Pottle St. to be converted to Oxford municipal headquarters. He said the interest rate for financing was locked in ahead of rate hikes announced this week. He expects to close in 30-45 days and as soon as it happens the moving process will begin. He expects that the current town office at 75 Pleasant St. can be vacated by September.

Garland also told selectmen that the King Street sidewalk rebuilding project is set to start next week.

KRT Appraisals, the business contracted to do Oxford’s property revaluations is finalizing its schedule and will soon start field work and send out notices to property owners to inform them of next steps.

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