Hazard Girls:
Women in Non-Traditional Fields

Host Emily Soloby, founder of Juno Jones Safety Shoes, interviews women who have successfully broken barriers in traditionally male-dominated fields. These dynamic women share their stories and advice for the next generation. Emily's goal with this podcast series is to show listeners that there are many ways to be successful - and being successful often requires hard work, community, and creativity, even when faced with adversity.


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Sn. 3, #30 Shannon Karels and Kathy Miller: Implementing Lean Transformations

The “command and control” leadership style is common within many organizations, but in today’s episode, we’re going to be discussing why a more inclusive and collaborative form of leadership holds so much value. Today’s guests are Shannon Karels and Kathy Miller, both of whom have had many years of experience leading manufacturing operations and implementing lean transformations. A lean transformation involves building an efficient, sustainable organization that is based on a foundation of respect for its people. The approaches that Kathy and Shannon have used (and the lessons they have learned) while successfully transforming businesses in this way have been documented in their book, Steel Toes and Stilettos, a must-read for any women (or men) in leadership positions!


Emily Soloby

Emily received her BA in Women’s Studies and JD from Temple University. Early on, she worked as a legal advocate for women in domestic violence cases. After practicing law, Emily began working on the business side of things. She is the co-owner of AAA School of Trucking, a truck and heavy equipment safety training firm, which she has spent the last 10 years growing into a thriving national business through government and military contracting and corporate partnerships.

As an executive in the transportation industry, darting from client meeting to trucking range required safety boots that met her style standards, and when she couldn’t find them anywhere, she created Juno Jones Shoes. Emily trained in shoemaking in Cuernavaca, Mexico and at the Brooklyn Shoe Space, and assembled a powerhouse team of designers, consultants, and industry experts to bring Juno Jones to life. Through Juno Jones Shoes, Emily is fulfilling her dream of not only providing women with safe, stylish footwear options for their jobs but of helping to normalize and empower women in traditionally male-dominated fields.

For more information go to junojonesshoes.com.


Shannon Karels

Shannon Karels is a Senior Operations Manager who has led multiple lean transformations and run operations for two large publicly traded corporations across various industries and business models. She started her career in supply chain management and progressed through lean and operations leadership roles. Through this journey, Shannon has improved cultures in numerous manufacturing facilities by leading employee empowerment and engagement, and building highly successful teams, with a focus on business results. Shannon holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Supply Chain Management from Western Michigan University.


Kathy Miller

Kathy Miller is a Senior Operations Executive who has held numerous global vice president and director roles both in manufacturing and lean enterprise leadership. Kathy is a Shingo Prize Recipient for Large Businesses as a Plant Manager. She started her career in Operations as a 17-year-old co-op student at a vehicle assembly plant, and progressed through engineering, marketing, lean, and operations leadership roles, working for four large publicly traded corporations in executive roles. Kathy is a transformational leader who consistently delivers impressive business results through team development, process discipline, and continuous improvement. Kathy holds a Bachelor’s in Industrial Systems Engineering from Kettering University, MBA from Ball State University and a Master’s in Applied Positive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania.  Kathy was inducted into the Women in Manufacturing Hall of Fame in 2021.