Police Commissioner Richard Ross promoted three department veterans Tuesday to deputy commissioner, nearly doubling the size of his leadership team.

The appointees included Joseph Sullivan, formerly a chief inspector and a visible presence overseeing protests and major events, and Robin Wimberly, a captain in West Philadelphia's 18th District, where two officers were ambushed by gunmen last year. The third is Dennis Wilson, formerly chief inspector of Regional Command Operations (South).

"At this level, that leadership trait and requirement goes up exponentially," Ross said during a promotional ceremony at Police Headquarters. "They are the ones who spearhead a lot of our efforts."

The promotions came a day after Ross announced 170 promotions further down the ranks. Combined, the efforts represent the most sizable departmental restructuring during Ross' term as commissioner, which began last January.

Ross called Sullivan a "tactical genius" and said Wilson was a quiet and steady leader who "just gets it done." He also praised Wimberly's experience, and noted that last year she was named commander of the year by Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 5.

Sullivan in September was awarded the city's Richardson Dilworth Award for Public Service for his role overseeing protests and major events such as the Democratic National Convention and the papal visit. He also was reportedly under consideration last year to lead the Memphis Police Department.

Two existing deputies - Myron Patterson and Christine Coulter - were also promoted Tuesday, becoming "three-star deputies." Patterson was also named first deputy commissioner, a post Ross occupied for eight years under former Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey.

After the impending retirement of Deputy Commissioner Denise Turpin, Ross' new leadership team will include five deputies, up from the three he had during his first year.