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Michael Payne, the original host and interior designer of HGTV's Designing For The Sexes, obtained a bachelors degree in physics and mathematics from Southampton University in England. After ten years in the computer industry, during which he was transferred from England to the United States, he pursued a career in interior design and graduated from the UCLA interior design program in 1980.

While attending UCLA Michael gained design experience working with a Los Angeles-based design firm specializing in high-end, international clients. He founded Michael Payne, Inc. in 1980, offering interior design services to clients on a national and international basis. In addition to his interior design business with private clients, he has licensing arrangements with various companies to design contemporary furniture, bedroom furniture, mirrors, and sculptured wall art. He was a spokesperson for Exciting Windows and Shaw Carpet and taught an interior design seminar at UCLA. In October 2007 Michael was nominated for a Pinnacle Award for his Max line of children's furniture.

Michael is a member of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) and is a Certified Interior Designer in the State of California.

In addition to Designing For The Sexes, Michael has been on numerous network television programs and radio stations throughout the country. He has also been the featured speaker at various national home shows, design events, museums, conferences, corporate events, and charity functions. Many newspaper and magazine articles have been written about him and he authored Let's Ask Michael in 2003.

Michael and his wife live in Los Angeles. Michael has completed seven marathons and numerous 10K races. In addition, he is an avid bicyclist and practices yoga. His interests include photography, gardening, and automobiles.

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