WATERVILLE — The U.S. Senate has confirmed former Colby College President William “Bro” Adams as the next chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Adams, who was confirmed on Wednesday, retired as head of the Waterville liberal arts college last month after 14 years.

He will succeed Jim Leach, who announced his resignation last year.

Republican Sen. Susan Collins says that Adams’ diverse experiences have made him ready to lead the federal agency that funds cultural programs nationwide.

Adams is a Vietnam War veteran and Fulbright Scholar and has sat on the boards for the Maine Film Center and Maine Public Broadcasting Corporation.

Independent Sen. Angus King says he’s confident that Adams will lead the agency with the same ability and character as he did Colby College.