When Cirrus announced the creation of a single-engine personal jet in 2006, Jay Jolley sent in a deposit check the same day. It took 11 years before the aircraft hit the market, but more than a decade later, Jolley took delivery of the Cirrus SF50 Vision Jet and made a historic flight home.
Jolley, a Chattanooga, Tenn. resident, is chairman and part-owner at EMJ Corporation, a general construction services company. Through his role with the company, Jolley travels frequently for business. His father, founder of EMJ Corporation and a pilot himself, was ultimately the reason he got into aviation.
After having a somewhat strained relationship into Jolley’s early teen years, he and his father finally decided what they needed was to work on something together. The two began working on radio control model airplanes to foster a better relationship.
“It gave us a way to share time together, a way to experience problems and solutions and victories and failures,” Jolley said.
The activity bonded them more than either ever expected, and Jolley developed a passion for aviation through the experience. As early as he was able, he began training to fly. He received his pilot’s license in 1977 at the young age of 17.
In 1983, Jolley began working at EMJ Corporation. He achieved his instrument rating in a Bonanza A36 and graduated to twin engines in the Cessna 421 Golden Eagle, both company airplanes. He made his first personal aircraft purchase and began a long tenure with Cirrus in 2003. Over the next 14 years, he would own four Cirrus SR22s, each one a slight upgrade from the last.
That’s how Jolley found Mark Rogers, founder and president of Lone Mountain Aircraft.
“I was introduced to Mark while selling my first SR22. Mark worked very well with me to coordinate the transaction,” said Jolley.
Since then, Jolley has trusted Lone Mountain to sell each of his SR22s.
With the pilot’s 11-year wait for the Vision Jet finally set for December 29, 2017, Jolley sold his most recent aircraft, a 2013 SR22T, in preparation for his new bird: the Cirrus SF50 Vision Jet Position 24.
Though the Vision Jet was Jolley’s biggest upgrade yet, it also meant the chance for a 41-year pilot to fly something new, and enhance the way he traveled for business and personal endeavors. Having completed all SF50 training and mentorship before his purchase, he was able to get it off the ground quickly, making history as the very first Vision Jet owner-pilot to solo home.
“That was my most memorable flight,” said Jolley. “When I got in it, it was surreal. To think that I’d spent over a decade waiting for this, and it had actually occurred…I never lost hope in it, but it was a long time to wait.”
Jolley counts the Vision Jet as the best flying experience he’s ever had in a single-pilot operation due to three factors: comfort, speed and safety.
“The pressurization and noise level are superior,” said Jolley. “The speed of the 300-knot aircraft gets me where I want to go quickly. Redundant systems increase the safety factor, and knowing there is a jet engine powering the aircraft multiplies its reliability.”
According to Jolley, there’s not a better aircraft to consider than the Vision Jet.
“It’s a mini-vacation when I’m flying the Vision Jet,” said Jolley. “I can forget everything else and focus on a passion.”
Jolley uses the jet for business and personal travel, often accompanied by some of his most precious cargo: Kelly, his wife of 23 years, and daughter Grace, a junior at Baylor University. Grace is the namesake of not one, but all five of Jolley’s planes. The Vision Jet’s moniker is “Miss Grace V”.
When Jolley isn’t flying airplanes, he’s building them. After completing the build of an AirCam, Jolley recently started in on a Carbon Cub EX2. When he needs a break from airplanes, he heads to the green for a round or two of golf.
After an 11-year wait for the “mini-vacation” that is the Vision Jet, Jolley said he won’t be looking to sell anytime soon.
“When I am ready, the first place I’ll go is to Mark at Lone Mountain,” Jolley said.
Our team of pilots at LMA enjoys helping clients not only buy, but also sell aircraft, handling all the transactions and communications in between. Contact us today if you are interested in learning more about the Vision Jet.
For more information on EMJ Corporation, go to EMJCorp.com.