METHUEN — When it came time to fill three open sergeant positions in the Methuen Police Department, Chief Joseph Solomon turned to civil service assessment scores to make his decision, but making promotions is more than just a numbers game.

“We look for common sense and decision makers,” he said. “When you’re in a situation, common sense can decide what to do, and you have to have the ability and fortitude to actually make a decision.”

Those traits make the city’s three newest sergeants “really stand out from their peers,” Solomon said.

Sgt. Joseph Aiello, Sgt. John DeLano and Sgt. Shawn Moore were sworn in on Tuesday afternoon in front of an audience of fellow law enforcement personnel, city officials, family and friends. Each of the three had his new badge pinned on by a member of his family, or several.

DeLano’s wife, Michelle, is a dispatcher for the department. She and their two children, Ryan and Natalie, teamed up to secure Sgt. DeLano’s new badge. DeLano said he owes his success to his family, who have stood by him through long hours at work and studying for rigorous exams.

“I can’t do this without my family. Sometimes it can be a real burden on them,” he said.

DeLano said the atmosphere within the department has been one of “healthy competition,” and he complimented fellow “amazing candidates” for supporting the three new sergeants.

“I’m looking forward to being able to work with the patrolmen and help guide them to better serve the community,” he said.

For Moore, the balance between working toward his master’s degree and pursuing a promotion on the force has been a hard one to strike. He studies Criminal Justice Administration at Salem State University. In spite of the challenges, he said the combination of his schooling and his training for the civil service assessment have helped him feel ready to assume the role of sergeant. He said he hopes to have the chance to mentor younger officers, as he felt he has been mentored by senior officers on the force.

“It’s about being prepared in multiple, different areas and being prepared across the board,” he said.

Moore’s twin brother and fellow Methuen police officer, James Moore, was promoted to sergeant last year.

Similar to DeLano and Moore, civil service runs in Aiello’s family. He earned an accolade from the city for his service with NEMLEC in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing and a certificate of appreciation from the U.S. Marshal’s Service for conducting security during the 2009 presidential inauguration in Washington, D.C. In spite of these achievements, Aiello said raising his son has been his proudest achievement.

Joseph Mark Aiello is an officer in the U.S. Navy, currently overseas in Afghanistan. Sgt. Aiello said he had to tell his son about his promotion via email due to limitations on communication where he is stationed.

“He’s actually been an officer longer than I have, so I had to ask him for advice. He was very reassuring,” Sgt. Joseph Aiello said. “He couldn’t say enough.”

Sgt. Aiello’s brother and fellow police officer Mark Aiello pinned his badge on.

“I am just really looking forward to (the new position) and all of the challenges and responsibilities that come with it,” he said.

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