Joe Poletto is the Managing Partner of Indie Global, a fully integrated media and technology company that specializes in developing and marketing media & entertainment. With Joe’s guidance and expertise, Indie Global has created and invested in companies all over the world, including Brandport (acquired by Live Gamer), Kinoma (acquired by Marvel), ScanScout (Acquired by Tremor Media, IPO August 2013), and YuMe Networks (IPO August 2013). Joe has over three decades of experience in media and advertising, serving at an executive level for MSN Network, Microsoft TV/WebTV, HBO-Comedy Central, A&E and the Madison Square Garden Network. Joe is a native of Connecticut and now makes his home in Sonoma, CA with his wife and two children.

Business Team

Michelle Ahern

As a veteran of both the client and advertising worlds, Michelle brings a well-rounded perspective to Indie Ads, where she oversees planning, buying and optimization. After getting her start in publishing, Michelle honed her skills in marketing and technology at Microsoft in the Digital Advertising Solutions division. Most recently, Michelle led national account service teams at Sugar Publishing and LinkedIn. 

Steven Marshall

As an executive level strategist and execution specialist with over 20 years of experience leading both product and business strategy, Steve helps businesses reach their greatest potential. He specializes in analyzing and advising on growth strategies and mergers & acquisitions.  Steve holds an MBA from Stanford Business School and a BA in Business Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles, where he graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa.

Farah Merchant

Farah keeps the operations running smoothly at Indie Global. She has held positions as a financial analyst and accountant at Sanmina-SCI, Consilium, Dell Computer and a number of smaller startups including ZING. She earned her BS in Accounting from San Jose State University and still makes the Bay Area her home. 


John Barbera

In 1978, John was hired by Ted Turner to launch the world’s first commercial satellite network. Throughout his 16 years at Turner Broadcasting, John led the development of the cable television industry. He was a key member of the team that created CNN and rose to become President of Sales at the company. With over 35 years of experience as a senior executive in cable, internet and broadcast television, John now shares his substantial media expertise, advising companies all over the US and Asia. 

Thomas L. Sheer

With 28 years of service in the FBI and Marine Corps under his belt, Tom is an internationally recognized expert in law enforcement, counter-terrorism, crisis management, competitive intelligence and internal regulatory compliance. After retiring from the FBI where he served as Assistant Director, Tom has worked in the private sector in executive management roles at W.R. Grace and Company and Mirage Casinos and Resorts.