A resident of Sullivan since 1980, Rob Eaton was named Sullivan’s first town manager in autumn 2017. The painting behind depicts the Sullivan Town Office, formerly a grammar school. PHOTO BY BRIAN SWARTZ

Meet Sullivan Town Manager Rob Eaton

Growing up in Malden, Massachusetts, Sullivan Town Manager Rob Eaton served in the Marine Corps from 1974-1977 and returned to Malden afterwards. There he met Candy, his future wife. Her mother lived in Columbia Falls, and her brother attended Narraguagus High School in Harrington.

After visiting Maine on July 4, 1978, “we moved up here later that year to Hancock,” Eaton recalled. “That first winter was tough. There were no jobs” except for skidder operators, “and I didn’t what a skidder was.”

The Eatons found work in spring 1979 and bought “an old Cape” in Sullivan in 1980. “We have lived here ever since,” Rob said.

Over the years he worked “off and on” at the Ellsworth YMCA, “in a lot of retail business in Ellsworth,” and as the emergency-services director for the Pine Tree Chapter, American Red Cross. Eaton was a state representative from 2006 to 2010.

In 2001, Rob and Candy bought an older camp on a Flanders Pond island. While in Florida a few years ago, Rob responded to a production company seeking possible projects for a proposed TV series based in Maine.

“We were Season 1, Episode 1 for ‘Maine Cabin Masters,’” Rob said. His inquiry turned into a spring meeting with Chase and a West Coast director. “I met them on the beach at Flanders. It was April; fortunately the ice was off the pond.”

Rob took his visitors out to his island that “foggy, miserable cold day.” The production company agreed to film Chase and the crew updating the camp, and shooting began that May 2.

Hired as Sullivan’s first town manager in autumn 2017, Rob noted that he and Candy “enjoy being outdoors all year round.” In winter they ice fish and snowshoe, and in summer “I love to go to camp,” he said. “I love Flanders Pond.”

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