Team

Lee Varian

Founder

Lee Varian is the Founder and original Director for the School of Tech Arts. Lee came to Gateway in 2008 after many years as a student pastor and then worship pastor from Texas to Florida. He studied at Southern Methodist University, Howard Payne University and New Orleans Seminary. Most of his life has revolved around live music and related technologies and he now serves as Pastor over Tech Arts and Technology at Gateway Church. He is married with two grown children and two grandchildren.

David Sumrall

Director

Prior to joining Gateway Church, where he began as Associate Director for Live Audio Production, David Sumrall worked as an Audio Engineer, Production Manager, Technical Director at recording studios, record labels, churches, theaters, and other performance venues. He graduated from Middle Tennessee State University, with a B.S. Mass Communications, Recording Industry and a minor in Music. He is married and has two sons.

Brandon Marx

Lead Live Video Instructor

Brandon Marx studied film production at Biola University in Los Angeles, where he developed an ongoing passion for film and broadcast production. He has been in the commercial and corporate video industry for over fifteen years, producing video content for live events such as TED, corporate video, healthcare, commercial video, and church media. Brandon has been a part of Gateway’s Tech Arts department since 2010. While he is not directing/producing, you can find him spending time with his beautiful wife and their three children.

Josh Mendenhall

Graphics Instructor

Josh Mendenhall has been in the production industry for over a decade. Having a background in film and photography, he found his passion in live production. He has worked with artist like Kari Jobe, Group 1 Crew, Hillsong, and many more. Josh joined the Gateway Tech Arts team in 2012 as a graphics operator and video technician. He loves coming up with new and creative ideas to use video technologies as a way of expanding the Kingdom of God. While Josh is not at Gateway, you will find him spending time with his beautiful wife.

Tim Sawtelle

Live Video Instructor

Tim Sawtelle was born and raised in Waterbury, Vermont. He attended a technology advanced high school, one of the first to use closed circuit television systems. Working with video and audio and doing remote video shoots from within the school for events, provided some very important foundational knowledge that would benefit him for years to come. After moving to Texas with his parents, and graduating North Garland High, he attended Texas Tech where he majored in music and minored in computer science.

After college Tim worked for Texas Instruments as a software engineer. He wrote software for proprietary robotic equipment that manufactured computer chips. During this time he traveled to Texas Instrument’s factories all over the world bringing the newly designed robotic equipment to them, training and instructing their engineers on how to operate the new equipment. Teaching became a sweet spot for Tim.

While working with Texas Instruments Tim applied for and was accepted into the Federal Aviation Administration ATC program. After graduating at the top of his class, he worked as an Air Traffic Controller for 11 years at the Fort Worth Air Route Traffic Control Center. During his time with the FAA he became a certified classroom and OJTI instructor for Air Traffic Controllers. While there he wrote and created various training videos that were used nationwide in training controllers. He also developed a new method to review and recreate air traffic events for quality assurance and training purposes that was implemented nationally.

Tim joined to Gateway Church in 2008 and began volunteering at the NRH campus in the TA video department, eager to learn and serve. Tim also completed all of the video courses at The School of Tech Arts. Eventually, Tim joined the TA staff as a campus video director.

Tim and his wife Sherri have four children and grandchildren they adore, most of whom live in the area. On Sunday afternoons you can often find Tim and Sherri exploring new roads around the surrounding lakes or walking through the woods of the Fort Worth Nature Center.

Guest Instructors

Brian Bolly, Cinema and Live Sound Project Manager, Meyer Sound Labs, Baltimore, MD
Alan Carter, Video Director, NBC’s The Voice
Ed Crippen, Audio Engineer/Systems Design, Clark, Nashville, TN
Robert Ennis Jr., Video Director, Wheel of Fortune, Hollywood, CA
Armando Fullwood, Director, Wave, Audio Engineer for Israel Houghton, Darlene Zschech, Andre Crouch, Martha Munizzi
Carrie Havel, Assistant Director/Producer, America’s Got Talent, Hollywood, CA
Lucinda Ireland, Technical Director, Jeopardy, Hollywood, CA
Buford Jones, Senior Education Specialist, Meyer Sound Labs, Berkeley, CA
Rob Kurtz, Lighting Designer/Director, Orange County, California
Kent Margraves, Blue Director Wave, Audio Engineer Elevation Church
Ken “Pooch” Van Druten, 3 Time Grammy Nominated Audio Engineer, Dallas, Texas
Brad Schiller, Lighting Professional and author of The Automated Lighting Programmer’s Handbook
Gabriel Antonini, DPA
Ryan Shelton, Digico
Chris Tsanjoures, Rational Acoustics
Tim Vear – Shure
David Leuschner, The Digital Great Commission
Andrew Stone, Church on the Move, MXU
Justin Firesheets, Church of the Highlands
Josh Holowicki, Founder E2IDesign
Jeff Sandstrom, Sonnet House, MXU, FOH Engineer for Chris Tomlin, Passion Conference, Israel Houghton
Pete Keppler, FOH Katy Perry, David Bowie
Larry Huante, Director, NBCNFW
Jonathan Decker, Producer, The Blaze
Jeremiah Clever, Elevation Church
Noam Raz, Waves Audio
Brian Victor, FOH Engineer for Phillips, Craig, and Dean
Todd Eliot, FILO Conference, Willow Creek Church
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