Women In Trucking announces its 2020 May Member of the Month
The Women In Trucking Association (WIT) has announced Emily Soloby as its May Member of the Month. Soloby is the co-owner of AAA School of Trucking, based out of Philadelphia, PA, and the Founder and CEO of Juno Jones Shoes, a new company creating stylish steel toe work boots for women. She is also the founder of the group Hazard Girls (Women in Nontraditional Fields), and the host of the new weekly Hazard Girls show on the WAM (Women and Manufacturing) podcast.
Soloby has had a lifelong love of boots but started her career on a different path. While majoring in Women’s Studies at the University of Minnesota, she volunteered as a courtroom advocate for abused women. That experience led her to apply to law school, and she later graduated from Temple University School of Law.
After earning her law degree, Soloby became a legal aid lawyer, helping women and children in divorce, child custody, and abuse cases. After a few years, she decided to return to graduate school for her Master’s Degree. While studying for her Master’s, Soloby met her future husband. After receiving their degrees, they developed an interest in a family business, AAA School of Trucking, located in Harrisburg, PA.
Soloby and her husband both went to work for the business, learning it from the ground up and eventually buying and expanding the business. They opened a second campus in Philadelphia, where they live. Her husband focused on overseeing the day to day operations of the school while Soloby focused on procurement. Together, the couple grew the business through both government and private contracts, and have now been successfully operating the school for over a decade. Under their leadership, AAA School of Trucking provides CDL training and licensing as well as equipment and safety consulting both locally and nationwide, and has amassed a long client list of high-level government agencies and billion-dollar companies.
One of the things Soloby loves about her work at AAA School of Trucking is the opportunity to help others. With her background assisting disadvantaged families in legal cases, it was a natural fit for her to find a way to help people through the new career opportunities that trucking provides. AAA School of Trucking works closely with a variety of organizations that provide funding for individuals to get new career training and job placement assistance, which AAA has excelled at for over 20 years.
It was during these years at AAA School of trucking that Soloby often had to run from client meetings to busy work sites, and couldn’t find the footwear she needed. She was looking for something with heavy tread and safety features, but that was still stylish and would look good with both jeans and her professional clothing. She scoured the internet and found nothing even close to what she wanted. That’s when she decided to combine her love of boots, her background in helping women, and her decade of running a successful transportation safety company, to create Juno Jones.
Soloby spent two years heavily researching the market, and speaking with hundreds of women in trucking, trades, engineering, construction, and many other fields, to learn exactly what was missing for them in safety footwear. She built a team including her husband and business partner, former Cole Haan designer Amanda Butler, and many industry professionals and advisors, and Juno Jones was born.
Their first release, the Meti Boot, is a classic Jodhpur style ankle boot with a side zipper, steel toe, puncture-resistant midsole, and slip-resistant rubber outsole with a heavy lug tread. It’s water-resistant and has a removable comfort insole. The boots are ASTM certified and OSHA compliant. But the thing that sets the Meti Boot apart the most is its style—it was designed to give women options in safety footwear, and to provide something they can wear from dropping off the kids to the office, to the worksite, and out to dinner. Soloby personally oversaw the design and development of the boot, including eight prototypes and countless fit-testers for comfort.
Juno Jones launched the Meti Boot on Kickstarter in February 2020 and reached its funding goal in just 29 hours. The boots are now available for pre-order on the Juno Jones website, www.junojonesshoes.com.
Additionally, Soloby had the honor of debuting the Juno Jones Meti Boot at Philly Fashion Week, and Juno Jones was honored to be selected as a Company in Residence for the Philadelphia Fashion Incubator at Macy’s.
Soloby also founded the Facebook Community “Hazard Girls (Women in Nontraditional Fields)”, which is a positive place for women in transportation, engineering, trades, and all traditionally male-dominated fields to come together for networking, support and friendship in a positive environment. The group also holds in-person educational events to inspire young women and girls who may be interested in nontraditional careers.
Check out Soloby’s new weekly Hazard Girls show on the WAM podcast by Jacket Media, where she is the host, interviewing members of the Hazard Girls about their experience and advice working in different industries.
Also, keep an eye out for Soloby at the WIT Accelerate! Conference in September, where she will be available to talk about AAA School of Trucking, Juno Jones Boots, and Hazard Girls.
Sign up for the Juno Jones email list at www.junojonesshoes.com, and follow them across social media @junojonesshoes.