PARIS — Rick Colpitts was named the new superintendent of the Oxford Hills School District on Monday night.

The Board of Directors unanimously approved the recommendation of the superintendent’s search committee to have the assistant superintendent take the help of the eight-town district.

“I’m thrilled, just thrilled,” Colpitts said moments after he was appointed to succeed Mark Eastman on June 30. Board members and school staff gave Colpitts him a standing ovation.

The vote was taken after a 30-minute executive session to discuss “personnel matters” and a recommendation from Mary Pietroski of Paris, chairman of the superintendent search committee and member of the Board of Directors.

Pietroski said the committee believed Colpitts shows a “real passion for educational leadership” and a commitment to the children of the district.

Colpitts, the former superintendent of SAD 39 in Buckfield, has worked part time and full time as the assistant superintendent for the past two years. Last year, he was appointed full time assistant superintendent with a salary of about $82,000 after SAD 39 merged with SADs 43 in Rumford and 21 in Dixfield to form the Western Foothills School District Unit 10. Colpitts, who lives in Peru, did not apply to be superintendent in that new district.

He was a former Hartford/Sumner Elementary School principal before being appointed superintendent of SAD 39. He also served as principal of the Crescent Park School in Bethel and director of elementary education in that district.

Eastman, 64, of Paris has been superintendent for 15 years.

Colpitts is expected to begin his new duties on July 1.

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