Henry Payne

Henry Payne is an award-winning auto columnist for The Detroit News, host of Car Radio on WFDF Detroit, and a syndicated editorial cartoonist and opinion writer. A 35-year news veteran, he joined The News in 2000 from Scripps Howard News Service in Washington, D.C. He has written for The Wall Street Journal, National Review, New York Post, Washington Times, and others.

Payne’s coverage for The News includes vehicle reviews, product trends, and breaking auto news. He’s won multiple awards for his car columns including the SPJ Excellence in Journalism prize. Payne is also an active race driver at the helm of a vintage Lola.

His weekly Car Radio Show for WFDF-910 AM Detroit is Michigan’s premier auto enthusiast program. The live talk show follows the auto industry’s news, products and trends featuring interviews with newsmakers from car executives to race car drivers. Car Radio is also available via podcast on Spotify, Apple, Google, Detroit News, and Stitcher.

A Pulitzer Prize-nominated cartoonist, Payne produces five cartoons a week for Andrews McMeel Syndicate. His cartoons are reprinted in 60 publications across the country. He has been awarded Michigan’s Best Editorial Cartoonist by the Associated Press and Best auto columnist by the Society of Professional Journalists. He was a runner-up for both the Mencken awards.

Payne has published three books including two children’s books by Random House. His first book, “Payne & Ink: The Cartoons and Commentary of Henry Payne, 2000-2001,” was published in 2002. He has also illustrated two children’s books for Random House: “Where did Daddy’s Hair Go?” (by Joe O’Connor) in 2006, and Dr. Seuss’ “The Ear Book” in 2007.

He was founder and editor of The Michigan View.com, an influential Detroit News commentary publication, from 2010-2013. 

Born in 1962 in Charleston, West Virginia, Payne received a degree in history from Princeton University in 1984. As cartoonist for two student newspapers, The Daily Princetonian and the Nassau Weekly, Payne won the College Media Advisers Cartoon Contest and the Tribune Company Syndicate’s National College Cartoonist’s Contest. Upon graduation from Princeton, Payne began his newspaper career as staff artist and cartoonist with the Charleston (WV) Daily Mail. In 1986 he joined Scripps Howard News Service and began syndication with United Feature in 1987.

Payne came to The Detroit News in 1999. He is the father of two boys and lives with wife, Talbot, in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

Birthplace: Charleston, West Virginia, 1962
Education: B.A., History, Princeton University

Articles on Payne:
Princeton Alumni Weekly, October, 2004

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