A Bit About Us

Turning Inspiration Into Action

The Indie Biz Academy facilitates training and mentoring programs to help independent business owners build meaningful and enduring companies with a strong network that encourages peer support and builds a thriving creative economy.

Winter Warmup is a two-day conference aimed at helping independent creative businesses kick ass and take names. The event includes a series of panels, workshops, and lectures that will give small business owners the strategic tools and operational capabilities to define and reach their annual goals.

Indie Biz Academy was founded by Sara Hartmann, Jen Palacio and Ali Horeanopoulos; three entrepreneurs with intersecting interests in the realm of independent retail and the creative economy.


Hi there!

More about the team at Indie Biz Academy

Sara Hartmann

Sara Hartmann

Sara attended MassArt as an undergrad in the fashion school. After a journey that included designing and making an apparel line by hand, founding a small business, traveling the world hunting for artisan goods, opening a shop in Somerville and getting a Masters in Business she finds herself teaching all that she's learned as a professor at her alma mater. Sara is on a mission to make Boston a hub of creative entrepreneurship.

Jen Palacio

Jen Palacio

Jen was once a corporate project manager and process improvement expert. She is now a printmaker and designer with a letterpress studio and brick & mortar stationery shop. Jen has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from BU and a Master’s in Sustainability and Environmental Management from Harvard. In addition to the shop and studio, she co-organizes several annual craft markets and teaches courses in the Sustainability Program at the Harvard Extension School.


Ali Horeanopoulos

Ali studied fine art at Suffolk University, concentrating in mixed media and sculpture. She worked in various roles managing the SoWa markets in Boston before starting her own retail business. She opened a brick & mortar in 2018 and can often be found at her design studio/tiny shop. 3 years ago Ali started a weekly meet-up of creative entrepreneurs who help each other navigate the challenges of business ownership.