March confirmed as Maine’s U.S. marshal

Posted April 22, 2010, at 2:37 p.m.

ORONO, Maine – The U.S. Senate confirmed Thursday afternoon the University of Maine’s top public safety official as the new U.S. marshal for Maine.

Noel March, who had been UMaine’s chief of police and public safety director for eight years, now will become the state’s highest-ranking federal law enforcement official.

March learned in December President Barack Obama had nominated him for the position.

The U.S. marshal’s responsibilities include catching federal fugitives, protecting the federal courts, running the witness protection program and transporting federal prisoners. The marshal also oversees Maine’s Violent Crimes Task Force.

“Noel is an outstanding choice to serve as U.S. Marshal for Maine,” said U.S. Sen. Susan Collins. “He is a good friend and a well-respected, and dedicated, public law enforcement official. I know that his experience at UMaine will serve him well as U.S. Marshal, and he will serve both our state and nation with distinction.”

March, a Connecticut native who has lived in Maine more than 25 years, was one of five people put forth for the position by U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, who coordinated the state’s marshal search. Other people considered included Oxford County Sheriff Wayne Gallant, Kennebec County Sheriff Randall Liberty, Deputy U.S. Marshal Kathryn Spellacy and U.S. Marshal for Maine David Viles.

Viles had served as U.S. marshal since 2002.

March said the interview and screening process began in April.

According to Collins’ office, March is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and he graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree from the University of New England in 1998.

Before his arrival eight years ago in Orono, March served as director of the Maine Community Policing Institute.

March said in December the U.S. marshal position is a “significant honor,” for anyone in law enforcement because the U.S. Marshals Service is the nation’s oldest federal law enforcement agency. It was launched when George Washington was president.

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