CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Judy Rose, Director of Athletics at UNC Charlotte, announced her retirement Thursday. Her last day will be June 30 at the end of the 2017-18 academic year.

Rose was with the university for 43 years and the athletic director for 28 years. She was the third woman to lead an NCAA Division I athletics program, the first woman named to the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Committee and oversaw construction of more than $100 million worth of athletic facilities.

The announcement of Rose's departure comes after some controversy last month. In December 2017, Charlotte 49ers fans called for her to be fired after she chose to retain football coach Brad Lambert despite a 1-11 season. Students were upset about paying $824 a year in mandatory athletic fees and getting a subpar product.

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“This is a difficult announcement to make, with the love I have for the university and the athletic program. (My husband) Ken and I have talked about this for awhile and made the decision that this would be the last year. Of course, I want to honor my commitments on the committees I serve and to hosting the NCAA tournament in March. At the same time, this announcement will allow both myself and the university the opportunity to start to take the next steps," said Rose.

In the last 10 years, the 49ers made 20 NCAA Tournament team appearances and earned 40 league titles. Seven sports were added under Rose's tenure: women's soccer, men's and women's indoor and outdoor track and field, football and women's golf.

UNC Charlotte Chancellor Dr. Philip Dubois said he will head the search for the next athletic director, establish a search committee and hire a search consultant.