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Michael Lewis

Since 2009, Michael Lewis has been a busy man. From becoming a husband and father to contributing as a Kentucky Proud farmer who is a Veteran of the 3rd U.S. Infantry, The Old Guard, he has proven how invaluable honorable service can be. He began full-time farming in 2010 and, after supporting local farmer’s market and community supported agriculture efforts throughout 2011, founded America's first Veteran Oriented food security organization, The Growing Warriors Project, in 2012. Growing Warriors, which has helped over 65 veteran families grow more than 18,000 pounds of organic food, exists to equip, assist, and train our nation's military veterans in agriculture production for themselves, their families, and the nation. In 2013, Michael was a celebrated recipient of Kentucky’s Local Food Hero Award, an honor granted by Seed Capital Kentucky and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture to exceptional individuals who promote local, farm-fresh food grown in Kentucky. Chosen from supporters who cast almost 2,600 votes, Michael stands out among 1,450 of his fellow Kentucky farmers for agricultural contributions he’s worked tirelessly for over the past several years, giving so many access to Kentucky-grown food straight from the farm. He has also served as a member of the Kentucky Industrial Hemp commission and, with the help of fellow veterans, operates America’s first federally permitted Industrial Hemp farm since 1934. As a founding partner of Freedom Seed and Feed, Lewis and his team have worked tirelessly to bring stable and certified hemp seed varieties to American Farmers. At the close of 2014, Yahoo lauded Michael as one of eight people who “Made our World a Better Place,” touting his efforts with Growing Warriors and its movement to promote projects across multiple states. In 2015, in recognition of his efforts to bring economic opportunities to rural communities across the country, Lewis was awarded the prestigious “Wendell Berry New Agrarian Award”. Compassionate and unfaltering, Michael’s impact is undeniable—even a brief conversation will show that his vision is contagious and will, as we work together, bring about the growth and change that Kentucky, the U.S., and our good green Earth so markedly needs.