The interim part of his title finally is being removed.

Curt Smyth, who served three times as the interim athletic director at the University of New England, was named the school’s athletic director Wednesday.

“I’m very pleased and a bit overwhelmed,” Smyth said.

Smyth, 48, held the interim tag since Sept. 1, taking over when Jack McDonald retired as AD after two years on the job.

While this was Smyth’s third stint as the interim AD at the Biddeford school, it’s the first time he became a candidate for the permanent position.

Smyth has worked at UNE since 1997, when he became the women’s basketball coach and sports information director. Since then he’s held several positions, including softball coach (1999) and men’s golf coach (2003-04).

“He has demonstrated his dedication to our students and the university,” school president James Herbert said in a press release.

In 10 years as the women’s basketball coach, Smyth compiled a 142-118 record, including a conference title and NCAA Division III tournament berth in 2001. He left coaching in 2007.

“I had the opportunity to move into administration full time,” Smyth said. “Having just started a family … while the hours of an administrator are long, they are a different type of hours. I’m not coming home at 11 p.m. after practice.”

Plus there was much less travel and no recruiting, so he could spend more time with his wife, Julie, son Drew, 12, and daughter Anna, 9.

“The facet I miss about coaching is the daily interaction with student athletes,” he said. “I still get that as an administrator but not on a deeper level.”

In 2007, Smyth became an assistant AD, working his way up to senior associate AD. He also served as interim athletic director in 2011 and 2015.

During his time at UNE, Smyth has seen the athletic department grow, especially with the addition of the “Big Blue Turf” field (opened in 2010) for field hockey and lacrosse, and the Harold Alfond Forum (2012) for the basketball, hockey and volleyball teams.

The school also launched a football program that will begin playing a varsity schedule this fall.

Because football will be using the Big Blue Turf field, Smyth said his immediate duties will include renovating the surface while developing another facility for the field hockey and lacrosse teams beginning in the 2018-19 school year.

UNE sponsors 17 varsity teams, seven for men and 10 for women.

The Nor’easters compete in the Commonwealth Coast Conference with nine schools from Massachusetts and three from Rhode Island.

Smyth grew up in Gorham, graduating from Gorham High, where he played basketball, golf and tennis. He graduated from St. Joseph’s College in Standish in 1991.

Smyth later worked at St. Joseph’s as sports information director. He also coached the Monks’ softball team for one season, in 1997, before moving to UNE.

Kevin Thomas can be reached at 791-6411 or:

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Twitter: @KevinThomasPPH