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Carter Bays
Bays at the 2013 Comic-Con
Carter Loard Bays

(1975-08-12) August 12, 1975 (age 45)
Alma materWesleyan University
OccupationTelevision showrunner, writer, producer, musician
Years active1998–present
Spouse(s)Denise Cox

Carter Loard Bays (born August 12, 1975)[1] is an American television showrunner, writer and producer. He is best known as co-creator, writer, and executive producer of the CBS sitcom How I Met Your Mother. His show has been nominated for seven Primetime Emmy Awards, including Best Original Song for "Nothing Suits Me Like a Suit."[2]

Bays also co-founded the band The Solids, who perform the theme song to How I Met Your Mother, "Hey Beautiful".[3]

Early life

Bays was born in Cleveland, Ohio. His father, James C. Bays, is a retired corporate lawyer, and his mother, Martha Bays, is a minister in the United Church of Christ.[4] He has a younger sister Abigail Bays.

While at Shaker Heights High School, Bays' play Five Visits From Mr. Whitcomb was selected for the Stephen Sondheim founded Young Playwrights Inc. 1993 Young Playwrights Festival produced at Playwrights Horizon's in New York City.

Bays graduated from Wesleyan University in 1997. In the summer of 1996 Bays and Thomas were interns in the Development department of MTV.[5]

Bays became an intern at MTV in the Fall of 1996, which would later influence his writing.[6]


After graduating from Wesleyan in 1997, Bays and Craig Thomas became writing partners, writing for the Late Show With David Letterman.

Bays also wrote for American Dad!,[7] Quintuplets[8] and Oliver Beene.[9]

In 2014 he shot a pilot for the show How I Met Your Dad with his partner Craig Thomas, Emily Spivey and Greta Gerwig, but CBS asked them to do a second pilot, and they refused.

Personal life

Bays lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Denise Cox Bays, and their three children. One of his daughters appeared at the end of "Trilogy Time", the other one at the end of "Unpause".

Bays serves on the Board of the Armed Services Arts Partnership.[10]


How I Met Your Mother

Oliver Beene

The Goodwin Games

American Dad!


  1. ^
  2. ^ Retrieved on 2009-15-04
  3. ^ Chow, Greg (1 April 2014). "5 Essential 'How I Met Your Mother' Music Moments". RollingStone. Retrieved 22 March 2015.
  4. ^ Meiser, Rebecca (November 2008). "Mr. Write". Cleveland Magazine. Retrieved 22 March 2015.
  5. ^ Jordan, Jessica; Robles, Jiovani (17 September 2010). "How We Finally Met Carter Bays: Part 2". The Wesleyan Argus. Retrieved 22 March 2015.
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-05-05. Retrieved 2015-03-18.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ [1]
  8. ^ [2]
  9. ^ [3]
  10. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-03-28. Retrieved 2015-03-18.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)