by Emily Langner
On season 2, episode 4 of the Build Better podcast, Anastasia welcomed Emily Soloby, founder of Juno Jones and co-owner of the AAA School of Trucking. In addition to designing work boots and gear specifically for women, Soloby is passionate about advancing women in nontraditional fields.
She started the Facebook group, Hazard Girls, a positive and inclusive group of women in hazardous fields like architecture, engineering, the sciences, construction, aviation, and firefighting, as well as other male-dominated fields like finance, law, filmmaking, and startups. Hazard Girls includes women at every stage of their careers from CEOs to students, who connect to support and empower each other online and through educational events and outreach.
Soloby says the Hazard Girls community started when women she knew began requesting that she connect them with other women in their fields. She says the goal is to create that community of women in these nontraditional fields, but also “to introduce these fields to young women as a real possibility.” She adds, “By providing a role model for young women, when they see a real life other woman doing these jobs, it then becomes a possibility for them.”
A unique quality of the community is that it brings together women from many different male-dominated fields. As a result, Soloby says, “the women are finding that they have a lot in common that they never realized.”
In addition to in-depth discussions on topics that affect all women in these fields, there are opportunities available to become a mentor for other members of the group (or to be mentored), or to participate in Zoom sessions on specific topics of interest.
Soloby’s advice for women in nontraditional fields is “You’re not alone. Even though it might sometimes feel like you’re one of the only women in your field, you’re not. You have thousands of other women out there waiting to support you, be your cheerleader, be your friend, so seek them out. Whether it be through Hazard Girls or another organization, women are there for each other, so find each other.”
Soloby is also the host the Hazard Girls podcast, where she interviews women working in nontraditional fields about their career paths. Topics include balancing personal and work lives, issues they have encountered and how they have dealt with them, their biggest challenges and triumphs, and advice for other women.
To join or to learn more about the community, visit junojones.com and click on the Hazard Girls tab.