About Us
The HI Hemp Company was founded by four friends and farmers, the Huffman’s and Ingrao’s.  We put the "H" and "I" in the HI Hemp Company.
When Hemp became federally legal in December 2018, Jeremy and Valerie Huffman, and Adam and Lacey Ingrao sat down together to explore a possible partnership.  Jeremy is a USMC veteran and Adam is an Army veteran. A big question arose; can different branches of the military actually work well together? Yes, they can! 

But before we get started introducing our team, let’s get your mind right; HEMP can’t get you high and neither will any of our CBD products.
Say "HI" To The Team

Valerie Huffman, President
Valerie Huffman, President, oversees the team’s finances, licensing, product creation, production and distribution, miscellaneous administrative work, and helps grow hemp at the team’s Swartz Creek farm.

Valerie has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Marketing from Kent State University.  She grew up around the Pittsburgh, PA area, and is a former Division 1 collegiate basketball player.  She played basketball at West Virginia University from 1998-2000, and at Kent State University from 2000-2003.  She had a successful career scoring over 2,000 points in high school, and over 1,000 points in college as a starting point guard and shooting guard.  After graduating, Valerie married Jeremy Huffman and moved to Camp Lejeune, NC, while he finished out his military career.

In 2006, Valerie and Jeremy both moved back to Pittsburgh, PA.  She spent several years working for her family’s CPA firm, Louis Zona CPA, P.C., as a tax preparer and bookkeeper.  During that period, she and Jeremy had 2 daughters.  The family then moved to Petoskey, MI, in 2010 where Valerie worked for MacDonald Garber Broadcasting, a company that owns and operates 8 radio stations.  She was the Office Manager and Bookkeeper for the company for over 4 years until the family once again moved.

This last move took the Huffman’s to Swartz Creek, MI, where they purchased a 10-acre farm.  In 2016, they established Huffman’s Homestead, a micro-farm that grows vegetables and raises small livestock.  Huffman’s Homestead is still in operation, producing and selling food for the local community through the Flint Fresh Food Hub.

Valerie’s background in business, administration, and her work ethic has been the driving force behind the launch of the HI Hemp Company.

Jeremy Huffman, Vice-President
Jeremy L. Huffman, Vice-President, brings years of self-employment and horticultural experience to the team.  Jeremy was born and raised in Michigan and has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Management from Albion College.  

Beginning his professional career as a financial advisor at American Express, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps after 9/11.  Jeremy deployed three times and his best memories are of helping Americans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and remembering the ridiculous antics of his Marine brothers and sisters. 

After serving in the USMC, Jeremy owned and operated a Subway Franchise.  It was a wild introduction to industrial food. Ever since, he has been growing his own vegetables.  He will kill plants before ever spraying poisons on them. His daughters eat tomatoes off the vine, and he “Pities the Fool!” that doesn’t wash their veggies from the store.

Jeremy is a strong advocate for veteran farmers and has been helping other Veterans, across Michigan, navigate the USDA, FSA, and NRCS to become new farmers.  Jeremy is proof that “Jarheads” can be reformed, although he talks to his plants as much as he talks to other people. 

Dr. Adam Ingrao, Secretary
Dr. Adam is a true PFC to PhD story! He has been working in agriculture since the age of 14 and brings over 25 years of production ag experience to the team. Over these years he has worked for some incredible ag operations including serving as a cut flower grower for the nation’s largest transplant producer.  He holds a B.S. in Agriculture and Environmental Plant Science from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and a PhD in Agricultural Entomology from Michigan State University and is a former National Science Foundation Research Fellow. His research and publications are focused on beneficial insects in agroecosystems (a fancy name for a farm) and using these insects to support ecosystem services (scientific jargon for things that help farmers like pest management and pollination).

Dr. Adam is also a 4th generation Army soldier who enlisted following the 9/11 attacks. Although his career in the military was cut short by a training accident, Dr. Adam has sought to serve his fellow veterans as they return home by helping them transition to careers in agriculture. He has served as the Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Farmer Veteran Coalition of Michigan,  the Founder and Director of Michigan Food and Farming Systems’ Veterans in Agriculture Network, and has also worked for years with lawmakers in DC and Lansing to advocate for programs supporting farmer veterans, including working closely with Sen. Stabenow (MI) and Sen. Roberts (KS) to advocate for farmer veteran programs and initiatives included in the 2018 Farm Bill.

Additionally, Dr. Adam is known across the nation for his educational outreach to veterans around beekeeping, the Heroes to Hives program, which is the nation's largest beekeeping education program for military veterans and their dependents. It’s a big program and has trained over 500 veterans in the art and science of beekeeping since 2016!

But all this work needs some life balance (Lacey is awesome at creating balance and centering this workaholic). Dr. Adam finds his solace and peace in the bee yard at Bee Wise Farms and loves spending time talking to his bees. He also loves Michigan and all its seasons! In the spring, summer and fall you’ll find him hiking and kayaking, and in the winters snowshoeing the Upper Peninsula. Although a Californian by birth he considers himself a Michigander at heart.

Lacey Ingrao, Owner
Lacey Ingrao, Co-Founder and Owner, holds a M.A. in Transpersonal Psychology, with a concentration in Eco-Psychology from Naropa University. As an Eco-psychologist, Lacey’s breadth of knowledge includes nature-based therapies, edible landscape creation, rites of passage, and mindfulness in Nature.

As a farmer and beekeeper, Lacey spends her time producing artisan honey and value-added products, along with sustainably growing flowers, herbs, and vegetables. Bee Wise Farms is where Lacey combines her knowledge and experience of farming with eco-psychological practices, encouraging a deeper connection between food, nature, and self.  

Additionally, Lacey is an independent contractor bringing her skills and experience in Program Management to organizations around the state. Lacey played a key role in starting the company and currently dedicates her time to her farm in the U.P.