Iris Woolley


During the first year of Junction Five-O-Five providing services, Iris mentioned to a reporter that, “Our first year we weren’t expected to place anybody…We got 26 into the community.”

Iris created Junction Five-O-Five to be a safe space for all walks of life that were there to obtain services and to work for those in the community. While Iris was undoubtedly an inspiration to many, she found herself inspired daily by the multiple facets of her work, from the people she served, to their loving caregivers, the generosity of the community and the support of the board of directors, all contributed to the perpetual felicity surrounding her purpose. One cannot easily measure the impact Iris had on this world, as it seems immeasurable. In addition to her day-to-day life, Iris was a fierce protector of human rights and an advocate for equality. She was the epitome of class, connecting the disconnected, offering respect to those who have gone without, and was a megaphone to voice social injustice as she saw it, doing all she could for diversity and inclusion, the underserved, and the under represented.

Iris was a tiny, fierce, educated, human rights driven force that allowed so many people to get the chance to be integrated in a community. She as well as many others worked long hours when state regulations would change and possibly effect the consumers she and her team served each day. Many evenings, her car was still at the office past 5p.m. as she was working on many things that made Junction Five-O-Five run so smoothly. She never said she was too tired to help people anymore or really wanted someone else to do her job because she needed a vacation. She had the ability to see what individuals were truly made of even if they could not see it themselves. She would put in the work to try to figure out what accommodations would work for consumers and which ones would not work. She always told her staff, that if one way did not end up working, “Try another way.” She did not believe in giving up after trying a few different routes, she explored every avenue in order to best serve those that walked through the doors at Junction Five-O-Five.

Junction Five-O-Five’s purpose was best described by Iris stating that it was designed, “to be an outlet for consumers [customers] who wish to have jobs in the community, allowing them to earn money to financially support themselves. 

Iris Woolley, Logan Martin, and many others in the beginning worked with customers to achieve obtaining job stability as well as maintaining job stability so that the customers could have houses, pay bills, have pets, that still are connected to us more than years later.

Pictured Above: Iris surrounded by J505 customers and employees. Late 1980s/Early 1990s

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