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The Indie Alley is run not by one person, but by a collective of local women who we've long called friends. Almost by accident we started this adventure together. We all have very different stories, and very different backgrounds, but we share a belief in the importance of supporting women, however they want to live and work. For us, The Indie Alley has become a space where we can work away from home offices and coffee shops, take the classes we actually want to take and not cross a bridge to make that happen, and get together over board games or cocktails, when we need a break from everything that demands our constant attention. 

We all arrived here, in Fairfax, and at The Indie Alley, from very different places. Some of us were stay at home moms (and kinda still are), some of us are playing that balancing game of a professional life and a family one. Some of us are from the creative industries, music, the arts, and publishing, and some of us are way more at home no where near anything that remotely looks like an office. There's straight-talking east coasters, California hippies, and even a Brit (make of that what you will). But we all call this part of the world home, and want to give back to this our dear community. 

There's some bio stuff below if you are interested, but really what we'd love is that you just drop by and say 'hi'. We welcome everyone, whereever you are in your work or you life. See you soon.

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STEPH HARTY

Founder and owner of The Indie Alley. Steph’s a music professional who’s worked for the Walt Disney Company, Sony Music and Universal Music Group. In 2011, realizing the corporate culture wasn’t for her, Steph started her own music promotion shop called Mad Hank Music. She’s worked with today’s most successful pop and rock bands and develops new talent. 

Jersey. New York. LA. Chicago. Fairfax. Steph’s career has taken her cross country. But she found home when she landed here in Fairfax. As an entrepreneur and a mom to two kids, Hank and Madi, Steph knows how to do the working mom shuffle. Surrounded by other entrepreneurial women, and wanting to find a place to work outside the home, Steph saw a need for a place for us to gather.

 So begins the story of The Indie Alley. It’s a place to work, a place to collaborate, a place to boost one another in this thing called life. Thanks, Steph.

 

 AMANDA SHEEREN

AMANDA SHEEREN

You could describe Amanda as a modern-day Renaissance woman. Mom. Maker. Mentor. With a degree in psychology, she’s dedicated much of her time to helping others. She works with foster children, special needs children, and the elderly. Her passion is helping to give a voice to those who have been quieted and brushed to the side. Really - she makes the rest of us look bad.

She’s published research in ‘biomedical informatics’ (google it) and has only recently shifted gears from acquiring a degree in Computer Science to pursue other opportunities.  Today she spends her time as a mom to Riley and Willa. She homeschools. She’s the Indie Promotions Coordinator for Mad Hank Music. She’s a birth doula and a breastfeeding counselor. She’s a vegan (ask her for some of her yummy raw recipes!).

Those many hats she wears? She crochets them all. And if you’re nice to her she’ll make you one, too.

 

 

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CLAIRE FITZSIMMONS

Claire didn’t choose the Bay Area - it chose her (although she technically fell in love with Marin when she visited when she was 19 and from then on dreamt about living here). She was recruited from the UK because of her talents as an arts curator. With an MA in Art History, Claire worked for Tate Modern, the Institute of Contemporary Arts, and the Serpentine Gallery in London. But when San Francisco came calling (in real, non-dreamy terms) she decided to grow her career with the CCA Wattis Institute. She’s now got two kids, Sam and Ottilie.

As a lover of ideas, Claire has spent the past couple of years examining and writing about the connection between culture and mental health. That led to her starting Storefront Institute, a pop-up maker space for thinking which hosts curated programs designed to actually help us deal with our very real and messy lives. She is a YBCA Fellow in the Public Imagination and her writing has been featured in The New York Times, The Independent, and Anxy amongst others. 

 

 

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TEAL DUPRE

Teal’s got the most local cred among us women. She’s not only born and bred in San Anselmo, she’s a fourth-generation local.

Teal loves performing. She’s been singing and acting in theater and film since she was nine and after a hiatus to explore other paths and do the mom thing (we can all relate, can’t we?) she’s getting back into her craft.

She’s had 19 careers since she was 17 - vet tech, florist, doll maker’s assistant, and graphic artist, to name a few. She even had her own pet care business for 10 years. She’s got a collection of animal skulls and once studied to be a forensic anthropologist. She’s as cool and interesting as she sounds and someone you want to know.

These days she’s the operations manager for Breakaway Matcha, an online matcha tea retailer where she utilizes all of the skills she learned from those 19 jobs. And she’s mom to two girls who have the same zest for life as Teal

 

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SHARON KLEIN

Biology major. Office manager. Scuba pro. Childcare ninja. Bartender. Interior designer. Pilot. Sharon’s a Jill-of-all-trades.

Originally from South Dakota, she made her way to the coast as soon as she could.  She’s a mom to two boys, Thomas and Gabe, and to the cutest French Bulldog. She’s married to an awesome, empowering and kind guy. She’s passionate about education and has been on the board of every school her boys have attended.

Sharon’s been sober for over 5 years and is super passionate about living a fulfilling and happy life without drugs or alcohol.  She’s interested in drug and alcohol education and helping to equip people (especially women and other Mom’s!) with the tools to navigate through the trials and joys of life.

Sharon loves cooking, decorating, and kickboxing. But she’s most at home in, on or below the water.

 

 

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JEN CIRALDO

A native New Yorker, Jen’s a fast-talking, loud laughing girl.

Growing up, Jen would watch surgeries on PBS and knew she wanted to make documentaries. After getting a degree in writing for TV and film, Jen’s first job was for National Geographic Television where she developed film ideas. She’s been a storyteller ever since. She’s produced films for National Geographic, Discovery, TLC PBS, A&E, Bravo. She writes scripts for TV documentaries.  She’s also written articles for the Huffington Post and Sunset Magazine. She’s a content creator for museums, media, and tech companies.

And when she’s not writing, hiking or drinking coffee, Jen’s chasing after her two energetic kids, Julian and Stella.

 

 

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BETTINA FERRANDO

Did you know that there’s a profession called Naming? Bettina didn’t, until one day she was required to name a wine and realized how incredibly difficult it was! That was 10 years ago and now she is a namer, or better yet, a word stylist…

She came to the US from Australia to create new wine brands for Foster’s (yes she does understand how cliched that is…). Her plan was to stay for three years. Fast forward 13 years. She has two girls who were born here and neither of them sound like her but they can pronounce water in both an American and Australian accent.

Bettina’s passion is creating names that are engaging, unique and tell a story. She has created names for many products and companies, global, local, boutiques and start-ups, and because she has been on both the client and creative side, she knows how it feels when you just want a damn name so you can move on to the next phase of the project. She also helped us come up with our name, The Indie Alley, and we'll love her always for that!