Ty Pennington: Wikis

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Ty Pennington
Born October 19, 1964 (1964-10-19) (age 45)
Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Other name(s) Tygert Pennington, Tygert Burton Pennington[1]
Occupation TV Personality
Official website

Tygert Burton "Ty" Pennington[2] (born Gary Tygert Burton on October 19, 1964[3] in Atlanta, Georgia) is an American television host, model, philanthropist, and a carpenter. He is most notable for being the host of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition which currently airs on ABC in the US and Ty's Great British Adventure, which airs on UKTV home in the UK. Previously, Pennington was a carpenter on the TLC reality show Trading Spaces. Currently he manufactures a line of furniture with the Howard Miller Company.

Contents

Childhood

Ty Pennington was born on October 19, 1964 as Gary Tygert Burton, the second son of child psychologist Yvonne Burton. Yvonne separated from Ty's father when he and his older brother Wynn were very young, and spent several years as a single parent before she eventually remarried. Her new husband adopted both boys, giving them both the Pennington name.

Pennington grew up in Atlanta, primarily in his hometown of Marietta, Georgia. He was considered an unruly child and had difficulty performing throughout school. "I would strip down naked, and hold on the blinds in my classroom as a child and swear along with that if I didn't get my way. I was just a very bad kid overall, I don't know how my mother raised me!" he said in an interview for E! network. He was hyperactive and later diagnosed with ADHD when he was seventeen by his mother, a graduate student in psychology, and his pediatrician, who didn't condone the use of Ritalin. To treat Pennington's ADHD, his mother didn't medicate him with Ritalin, but rather implemented a system called a "Token economy" to end his daily trips to the principal's office and his disruptive behavior in class. The Token economy was used all through his school career, with varying degrees of success and failure. It wasn't until he was 19 years old that Pennington was treated with medication. He is now a spokesperson for the organization ADHD Experts on Call, and manages his condition with Vyvanse. His mother became a psychologist and focuses on the treatment of ADHD and depression, teaching other parents how to raise ADHD kids with or without medication. ...

Education

A self-described "Jack of all trades", Pennington learned woodworking early in life. His interest in home improvement started when he and several neighborhood kids built a three-story treehouse in their neighborhood, which Ty designed. From there, he began teaching himself about carpentry and home improvement. After attending Sprayberry High School in Marietta, Georgia, he attended Kennesaw State University, following which he received his undergraduate degree in graphic design from the Atlanta College of Art while working his way through school as a carpenter.

Modeling

During his final semester, Pennington was approached by a modeling scout, and soon began a lucrative career in that field. He traveled the world and landed print jobs for J.Crew, Swatch and Sprite, and appeared in television spots for Diet Coke, Levi's, Macy's and Bayer, among others. His job as a model took him to places all over the world, as he went on to reside in Japan, Thailand, Italy and Germany.

Television

Pennington parlayed his hands-on skills and design acumen into a career in the entertainment industry, becoming a set designer, including for the critically acclaimed film Leaving Las Vegas in 1995. However, his professional breakthrough came through The Learning Channel's (now known as simply TLC) innovative hit show "Trading Spaces." He quickly became known for his off-the-wall sense of humor and creative style during four years as the show's playful designer and carpenter. Pennington has also taken a hand into acting as well. In 2003, he played Wilbur Wright in the independent film, The Adventures of Ociee Nash, and, in 2004, he made an appearance on the TV series Wild Card. He also appeared in Country Music singer Cyndi Thomson's music video I'm Gone.

When ABC began developing a show that would transform the homes of deserving families in seven days or less, Pennington was chosen as the leader of the eight-person design team. Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, which was originally only supposed to be a 13-part special, went on to be a huge hit, and catapulted Pennington into the mainstream even further. This led to an endorsement deal with Sears, a sponsor of the show. In the years since the show started, Pennington has been known to have fought off anything from pulled muscles to heatstroke to food poisoning to keep doing his job. In January 2005, while working on a makeover right in his hometown of Atlanta. Pennington underwent an emergency appendectomy, taping an episode of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition while in the hospital. Now entering into his seventh season as host and designer, Ty spends 240-260 days out of the year working on the show, and declares it to be “the greatest job in the world”. The success of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition in the UK, where it is shown on the UKTV Style channel, resulted in the channel commissioning Ty's Great British Adventure, where Pennington worked with the community of Portreath in Cornwall to restore a run-down town park in a week. The series was shown from September 16, 2008.[4]

Prior to his partnership with Sears, Pennington was the owner and designer of his company, Furniture Unlimited, which is based in Atlanta and Los Angeles. He also lends his name to Sears, with their design team guiding the design of every item in the Ty Pennington Style line of bedding, tabletop items, bath accessories, furniture, patio furniture, and other miscellaneous home decor. In addition to his involvement in design, marketing promotions and public relations activities for Sears, Pennington is also active in community outreach through the Sears American Dream Campaign. In addition to his furniture designing, he also carries a line of hardwood flooring through Lumber Liquidators.

Pennington published the book Ty's Tricks: Home Repair Secrets Plus Cheap and Easy Projects to Transform Any Room (2003), a do-it-yourself guide on home improvement. On May 15, 2007, he released the first issue of his quarterly magazine Ty Pennington at Home. The magazine gives his fans and avid interior designers a glimpse of his works as well as bits and pieces of his rather busy life. He has described many of his techniques and the techniques of other designers on interior design as well as answers questions sent from readers. Also includes articles from people across the country who have shared different aspects of home repair and design. Ty's own advice articles include do's and don'ts, choices of tools, how-to instructions on how to build custom pieces of furniture, and comparisons between glamorous interiors and identical, more budget-friendly choices of decor. Other sections include information of eco-friendly home decor items, the latest electronic gadgets to ease the process of everyday life, and even recipes set for a multitude of family meetings and social gatherings.

On July 25, 2008 Ty announced a 3 year partnership with Marketplace Events, the largest organizer of consumer remodeling, home decor and gardening shows in North America.[5] Ty will be spokesperson for the 30+ events in 25 markets.

In September 2008, Pennington became the spokesperson for Abbott Nutrition and their baby formula packaging innovation called Similac SimplePac.[6] He was also involved with the Similac Custom Nursery Design Contest and Ty’s Nursery Guide that were part of the new product marketing.

Charitable work

One popular feature in his magazine is where Pennington discusses his involvement with several charities. For example, he visited Hawaii and stumbled across AccessSurfHawaii, a volunteer group which helps kids with disabilities learn to surf and play other water sports. Ty spent the day surfing with the volunteers and their kids. Afterwards, he approached the founder, Mark Marble, and said "I've been to Hawaii six times and this is the first time I've understood the true meaning of Aloha".

He also helped Bayer Asprin, for whom he's been an avid spokesperson, launch their first Wonders of the Heart contest, the first winners being announced in Summer 2007, and he also participated in a celebrity soccer match as part of a fundraiser for the Los Angeles Children's Hospital, benefiting bone marrow transplant patients, which was organized by Olympic gold medlaist Mia Hamm. Ty has given tours of several Hollywood homes and work places including his own, that of fellow Extreme Makeover: Home Edition designer Michael Moloney, actress Constance Zimmer, and TV talk show host and cook Rachel Ray. He shows tours of makeovers he has given to other celebrities, including Mark Stines, Extra co-host Dayna Devon (done with much assistance by Michael Moloney, and Live with Regis and Kelly co host Kelly Ripa. He has given several "Behind the Scenes" tours of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, showing the work he and the rest of the designers and production crew carry out during the 7 day transformations of peoples homes and lives.

Family life

Pennington currently resides in the Los Angeles suburb of Venice, California with his girlfriend and manager Drea Bock.

Arrest

Pennington was arrested on suspicion of DUI on May 5, 2007, at 12:35 am in Los Angeles.[7] He was released on $5,000 bail. Pennington issued an apology shortly after. It was later revealed that Pennington had a .14 blood alcohol level when he was stopped. The legal limit in California is .08.[8]

His publicist released this statement from him: “We all make mistakes, however this is about accountability. Under no circumstances should anyone consume alcohol while driving. I could have jeopardized the lives of others and I am grateful there was no accident or harm done to anyone.”[9]

“This was my wake-up call,” Pennington said. “I also want to apologize to my fans, ABC Television and my design team for my lapse in judgment and the embarrassment I have caused.” [10]

On June 25, 2007, Ty pleaded no contest to the two charges, one of which was dropped. For the remaining charge he was fined $390, received 36 months probation, 90 days suspended driver's license, 90 days in an alcohol treatment program, and, for community service, was required to attend a Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) seminar, all of the terms of which he has agreed to follow. A spokesperson for the Los Angeles City Attorney said that this punishment is common for first time DUI cases and that Pennington received no special treatment. He has since returned to Extreme Makeover: Home Edition".

Books

  • Good Design Can Change Your Life: Beautiful Rooms, Inspiring Stories, Simon & Schuster; (September 9, 2008) ISBN 978-0743294744
  • Ty's Tricks: Home Repair Secrets Plus Cheap and Easy Projects to Transform Any Room, Hyperion (2003) ISBN 1401300677

References

External links

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