There's one person on Southern Charm who doesn't get involved in the drama even though he seems to know everything about everyone. Even so, Patricia Altschul's butler, Michael Kelcourse, brings a lot to the table, both literally and figuratively. He has become a beloved fixture on Southern Charm, but the viewers don't get to hear a lot about his personal life.
In her book The Art of Southern Charm, Patricia revealed that Michel was born and raised in Michigan. After graduating from college in Michigan, he worked at a nursing home in his home state. In a joint interview with Patricia for the Southern Charm After Show in 2018, Michael explained why he became a butler. He remarked, "It just seemed silly to be working for people who are sick and dying instead of working for people who were quite well. The longevity."
However, Michael didn't feel like Michigan was the best place for him to succeed if he wanted to work in the service industry. In a 2018 interview with The Glam Pad, Michael shared, "There simply weren’t enough wealthy families who employed full-time domestics in Michigan."
He went on to work for Lillian Bostwick in New York for thirteen years. When she passed away, Michael wanted to continue working as a butler. His former employer's interior designer Mario Buatta is the one who connected Michael and Patricia... with a call from Lillian's memorial service of all places.
In a 2018 Southern Charm After Show episode, Patricia revealed, "Mario Buatta called me up and he said, 'There is a circle of women just waiting to pounce and get Michael. You better get him now.' I hate to say it, but she had only been dead like two days."
Patricia also remarked, "I knew all about Michael and I did it right then and there. Poor thing. The body was hardly in the grave and I was making deals." And the two have shared a special bond ever since.
Currently, Michael lives in a house on Patricia's property so he can be close by if his services are needed. Even so, Michael insisted that their relationship is a two-way street during a 2018 appearance on the Southern Charm After Show. He shared, "When she's been ill, I've looked after her. When I've been ill, she's looked after me."
And that's not unusual as far as Michael is concerned. Michael explained, "The employer usually looks after the domestic because we do make their lives possible to a certain level and they make our lives possible to a very nice level also." That is both logical and heartwarming.
Michael does a lot to make Patricia's life possible. The word "butler" doesn't cover it all. In that same interview, Michael clarified, "I think we should mention 'Majordomo' because it's not just silvering and answering the phone. It's a little bit of pet care, car care, shopping, assisting, traveling, packing, a little bit of everything."
Patricia added, "It's funny because people think Michael does everything in this big house, but we have cooks, we have housekeepers, we have gardeners, we have pool guys, pond guys, and the list is endless. And Michael oversees everybody." The Southern Charm star shared, "I get these comments like 'I hope you pay him a big salary.' Of course, I do. He has a Swiss bank account."
After, Michael confirmed that he makes "more money than [he] could ever spend in three lifetimes." He could use that salary to buy a new wardrobe, but in a July 2018 tweet, Patricia revealed that Michael is the one who chose that signature apron.
Aside from gaining love from the Southern Charm fanbase, another perk of the job is the gossip. In an interview for the Southern Charm After Show, Michael said the Southern Charm cast members "always say 'can we tell you this and you won't tell anyone?' And the minute they're done, I make wind sprints up to Mrs. A because we both enjoy the fact that that we're sort of like parents for a group of people."
It may seem like Patricia is living the best life in Charleston thanks to Michael, but Michael truly loves his life thanks in large part to his work with Patricia. When it comes down to it, Michael is exactly where he's meant to be. He has a job he loves, a boss that respects him, and fans that appreciate him.