The Fairfield Police Department's promotions ceremony Monday covered different phases of the life of a police officer, from the initial swearing in as a rookie to veterans' moving up in rank.

Held at Roger Ludlowe Middle School, the first order of business was the oath of deputy chief delivered to Chris Lyddy, a 27-year veteran of the department. Born and raised in Fairfield, Lyddy filled the second-in-command spot vacated earlier this year when Gary MacNamara was promoted to chief.

State Sen. John McKinney, R-Fairfield, said he's known Lyddy for years. "This is a tremendous tribute to you and your hard work," McKinney said. "I thank you, as a parent, for allowing me to sleep at ease at night because of your hard work."

Lyddy has served as a patrol officer, detective, patrol sergeant, lieutenant and commander of the patrol division, and while he said he enjoyed all of those jobs, he has an "affinity" for the department's investigative work. A graduate of the FBI National Academy, Lyddy also is the executive advisor to the Police Explorer Post and assistant director of the Northeast Regional Law Enforcement Association, and the founder and co-chairman of the Agape Society, a charitable organizations providing resources to disabled children.

To fill Lyddy's position, Josh Zabin was promoted to the rank of captain. He joined the town's police force in 1986 and, most recently, served as commander of the professional standards office, including internal affairs investigations, police and grant writing.

Promoted to lieutenant was Christopher Tursi, who most recently was assigned to support services, while Seth Jenkins was moved up to the rank of sergeant.

Three officers were promoted to detective -- Peter Koval, Edward Nook and Alex Fucci -- and three rookies joined the department, Michael Stahl, Jason Kline and Michael Clark.

"We believe you all will serve this department well in the future," said Police Commission Chairman Donald Kleber, a law-enforcement veteran himself. Kleber thanked those promoted Monday evening for their hard work and welcomed the three new officers to the "most noble profession."

First Selectman Kenneth Flatto said the town's 59,000 residents have "never been better protected."