After being diagnosed with muscle wasting disease Muscular Dystrophy (MD) aged just 18 in 1984, Michael made history 20 years later by becoming the first disabled person to lead expeditions to the North and South Poles.
The journey gave rise to a new life plan, inspiring Michael to embark on a career as an internationally recognised motivational business speaker. He has built an enviable list of clients, providing carefully tailored speeches for organisations including Virgin, PwC, Shell and the NHS.
Leadership, courage and trust combined with resolute self-belief, confidence, teamwork and a singularly focused obsession towards achieving desired outcomes were critical success factors – Michael draws on these experiences, giving wider business and life lessons.
Michael also used his Arctic adventures as a launch pad for The Muscle Help Foundation (MHF), a unique national family charity that delivers highly-personalised experiences, known as Muscle Dreams, for children and young people with MD. Michael is affectionately known as the Chief Muscle Warrior; he is a Founder and the CEO.
This multi-award winning charity has delivered more than 240 transformational Muscle Dreams, helping children realise cherished ambitions, including interviewing Al Pacino, inspecting an Airbus A380, hanging out with Lewis Hamilton and training with the England football team at St George's Park. MHF’s profile is growing - in 2017, the charity announced a new three year partnership to increase national awareness of muscle health with family-protein drinks brand Upbeat and in 2015, the charity was named the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team’s official Charity Partner for 2015/16.
Michael’s work was recognised in the Queen’s Speech 2004, when Her Majesty praised his “contribution to national life”.
In 2005, Michael received the prestigious Business Traveller of the Year Award presented to him by Kate Adie in Dubai.
He was also a Paralympic Torchbearer in 2012 and four years later, he was named one of the most influential disabled people in Britain, featuring in both Power 100 2017 and Power 100 2016.
Prior to Michael’s expeditions to the North and South Poles, he was an influential figure in hospitality. He remains diligently engaged with the industry having served as a Disability Ambassador for Hilton Hotels, while he also volunteers as a judge on the prestigious Cateys Awards.