It’s a welcome sight to see; there are more and more fashion companies out there with a conscious, all putting a stylish spin on doing something good. One of those companies is watch brand JWLS.
JWLS is a watch line for men and women created by model and entrepreneur Emily Lyons. The watch line is named in honor of her late sister, Julia Lyons, whose nickname was “Jewels”. Julia suffered from Cystic Fibrosis, and passed away in 2011 after a long and difficult battle with the disease. Cystic fibrosis (CF) is the most common fatal genetic disease affecting Canadian children and young adults, and it has no cure.
JWLS donates 100% of its proceeds to the Julia Lyons Foundation, a not-for-profit foundation also founded by Emily Lyons. Her foundation provides financial aid directly to those in the CF community, getting funds to those who desperately need it. So every watch purchased does a little bit of good while looking fabulous at the same time.
I got the chance to chat with Emily about her career, what it’s like to be an entrepreneur of multiple companies, and why it’s important for her to do some good with the work she does.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A veterinarian! I’ve always loved animals.
How did you get involved with the work you currently do?
It was a combination of working in events, and reading a book that inspired me. I love reading books it’s a great way to learn new things.
What is your WHY? (The reason why you do the work you do)
I love running my own business. I now own several companies and each one fulfills something different and has its own WHY. I love being able to give great employment opportunities to young individuals, to help build brands, to change and innovate with new products, and to help people find love!
What are the biggest challenges/setbacks you’ve had to face?
Being a young female without experience, funding, education or connections.
What are some of the successes (big or small) you’ve had?
Well it’s been 10 years now since I launched Femme Fatale Media, my first company. Some of the most notable successes was being featured in Forbes, featured on a billboard in Times Square, working with Justin Bieber, Drake and JLO, as well as passing 6000 staff on our roster.
What’s piece of advice would you give to someone trying to do what you do, or trying to follow their own dreams?
Don’t give up. Business is largely problem-solving. If what you are doing isn’t working, find another way. Don’t make excuses. We aren’t responsible for what happens to us, but we are responsible for what we do with it and how we react.
How do you do manage to do it all?
A great team!
If you had one wish to help make the world a better place, what would it be?
To cure cystic fibrosis.
Who (person or organization) inspires you?
My sister Julia, always and forever will be my inspiration. My dogs and the way they love, without judgment or expectation, is something so amazing.
If you could pick one charitable organization to ask our readers to donate to or volunteer with, which would it be?
The Julia Lyons Foundation, www.julialyonsfoundation.com