By Stan Friedman
ATLANTA, GA (July 25, 2012) – While sitting backstage at the recent CHIC 2012 gathering North Park University graduate Greg Dolezal said that he was a bit nervous about the upcoming London Olympics. He’s not an athlete nor does he have family members competing.
But the images broadcast on the video screens at each of the 36 Olympic venues will be powered with software designed by the company he co-owns, Renewed Vision. Dolezal was at CHIC because the event, which he attended as a teenager, was using the software, and he was in charge of video production.
He also was there because he is Chris Tomlin’s tour manager.
Renewed Vision’s gig with the Olympics was one he never could have imagined when the company that makes ProPresenter, now in its fifth release, was formed. The company also makes ProVideoPlayer, and ProVideoSync.
“Our core value is to make software that is affordable to smaller congregations,” Dolezal said. The software is now used by thousands of churches around the world ranging in attendance from less than 100 to the largest in the United States.
Dolezal grew up attending a small Evangelical Covenant Church in Joliet, Illinois, and went on to attend North Park. He graduated in 2001 from the university with a degree in business and communications and planned to attend law school.
The he decided that wasn’t the career for him.
Dolezal eventually moved to Atlanta where he began working with Tomlin and Louie Giglio, who had started the Passion movement.
Dolezal became acquainted with the two men during his last two years at North Park. He was in charge of Week 26, which featured special speakers and other faith-focused activities. Giglio spoke the first year, and Tomlin performed the year after that.
During that time, the school also was a satellite location for the OneDay Passion gathering that drew 40,000 college students at a Tennessee. “I think one of the reasons Giglio chose North Park was he was so impressed with the school,” Dolezal said.
After Dolezal moved to Atlanta, he began doing video work for the Passion gatherings. That was about the same time that Tomlin became a headline performer. “He just asked me to be his tour manager,” Dolezal said.
Backstage at last week’s CHIC conference, Tomlin said he was fortunate to have Dolezal working for him. “Greg keeps it in line,” he said. “We definitely couldn’t do this without him.”
A lot of Dolezal’s job is logistical, including booking bus companies and venues, arranging the local crew, and serving as general manager onsite. Tomlin added that Dolezal is far more than a tour manager.
“He helps me think creatively about the tour and the shows,” Tomlin said. “I bounce everything off of Greg.”
Dolezal is able to manage a tour and his company due to scheduling priorities and the 12-member team that now makes up Renewed Vision. Tomlin is rarely on the road more than several days a week, and almost always is in Atlanta on Sunday because he co-pastors Passion City Church with Giglio.
Managing tours that can visit as many as 50 cities, handling the business end of a successful company, and spending time with his wife, Natalie, and three-month-old can be difficult. “My wife owns her own company, so we have to be pretty intentional to spend time together.”
Whether he is at home or on tour over the next several weeks, his mind will certainly also be paying attention to what is happening in London.