Michael was born and raised in Oak Park, Michigan. After receiving a degree in advertising and communications from Michigan State University, he went to Los Angeles and began his career in the advertising business, working in account management at Marsteller Advertising, TracyLocke and DDB Needham. As an account supervisor at DDB Needham, Michael met KHJ-TV sales rep and future wife and business partner Joni Abramson. Shortly after getting married, Joni and Michael moved to Portland, Oregon. Michael continued in marketing and advertising in Portland and later on in Houston. Then, after a 20-year career, Michael found himself between jobs. He began consulting, with a focus on small business. His initial clients included a law firm, a bank and a retail company. Eight months later, after becoming involved in a parks project with the city of Bellaire, Michael and Joni decided to start a community magazine. Joni quit her sales job at KHOU-TV, and the first issue of The Bellaire Buzz debuted in January 2002. The West University Buzz followed in 2005 and The Memorial Buzz and The Tanglewood/River Oaks Buzz in 2006. Michael and Joni have two sons, Andrew and Matthew, and a golden retriever (their third) named Bailey, who can often be found hanging out at The Buzz Magazines office. In addition to his love of Golden Retrievers, Michael is a loyal Houston Astros fan.