“I grew up in Colorado,” says Surry Selectman Bill Matlock, who started working “for a corporation in the late ’60s” and saw his career take him to several states before “I retired in 2004” in New Jersey with his wife, Marget.
They vacationed that year in Nova Scotia “and loved it there and wanted to live there,” Bill said, but Canadian immigration laws made their residency impossible. “We came back on the ferry to Bar Harbor and got off and asked, ‘What looks like the coast of Nova Scotia?’”
The Matlocks built a house in Surry and moved there from New Jersey in 2004. “I love the nice, easy life in Maine,” Bill said. “I think Maine is kind of a hidden gem.”
In 2007, “I was on the [Surry] Finance Committee and got exposed to the town government,” and Marget was on the Planning Board, Bill said. Winning election to the Surry Board of Selectmen in 2010, he has served on the board since then. The other selectmen are Board Chairman Steve Bemiss and Betsy Armstrong, who was elected this past spring.
Bill described the town meeting format as “an interesting form of government, the most direct form of democratic government there is. “We have good participation in Surry,” he said, and “for the most part, no problem filling town committees.
“I think we’re like hundreds of other small Maine towns. People care about their neighbors,” he said.
Bill has a son, Richard, a professor at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. Richard and his wife, Julia, have a young daughter, Veronika Elizabeth.
Bill has “traveled all around the world” and to several states as an American Kennel Club judge specializing in Bernese Mountain Dogs and Newfoundlands. He and Marget have a “Newfie,” four Norwich terriers and a petite bassett griffon vendeen.