See My Art, Inc.    Board of Directors

Sara Balbin – President

My focus as a professional artist and art’s advocate is deeply rooted in my Cuban born heritage and daily immersion in the inspirational Chequamegon forested environment of my home in northwestern Wisconsin. Having earned both a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Art Therapy from the University of Wisconsin-Superior, I am a registered art therapist with the State and National Credential Boards. Since 1987 I have worked from my Dragonfly Studio/Gallery on Blue Moon Road in Drummond, Wisconsin. My commissions have come from museums, colleges, businesses, town governments, tribal entities, nonprofit organizations and private individuals.  My work has been supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, Wisconsin Arts Board, Wisconsin Humanities Committee, EAA Aviation Museum, Chequamegon Bay Arts Council, as well as foundations, and patrons of the arts. As an artist, it is my long friendship with the Lake Superior Chippewa (Ojibwe) community of Lac Courte Oreilles (LCO), the Anishinaabe, that inspired my most historical work. The LCO Tribal Government commissioned thirty-two tribal elder oil portraits representative of the generational heritage of the First People. With biographies and illuminating essays, which I co-authored, my art was shared in the book Spirit of the Ojibwe; Images of Lac Courte Oreilles Elders, published in 2012. Since its inception, I have served on the Board of Directors to the Cable-Namakagon Historical Museum as curator. My activity as an advocate across a large region has helped open new opportunities for artists.  As founder and first president of the Cable Hayward Area Regional Arts Council (CHARAC), I helped bring a focus for community arts activities to Ashland, Bayfield, Sawyer, and Washburn counties. In 2008, I co-founded See My Art, Inc. (SMART), which acquired a not-for-profit 501c3 corporation status in 2012. I am passionately aligned with SMART’s mission of “Unlocking Doors and Opening Minds through Art”. In January, 2020, I was honored by the Wisconsin Academy of Science, Arts and Letters as a Fellow, celebrating their 150th year Anniversary. The Academy, whose mission is to gather, share, and act upon knowledge for the betterment of Wisconsin, recognized my accomplishments as an artist, art therapist, author and community activist. I closely adhere to their guiding values of: Curiosity, Critical thinking, Creativity and Civil discourse. To learn more about the Wisconsin Academy visit: . For further details of my life’s work in the arts visit . I’m honored to work with my kind and compassionate fellow Board Members, and the SMART volunteers who remain dedicated to the organization’s mission and vision.

“Unlocking Doors and Opening Minds through Art”

Lisa Seiffert – Vice President

I welcome the opportunity to work collaboratively with the SMART board to continue to empower and inspire people with disabilities through art. I have spent my life working with students with disabilities. I retired four years ago working 36 years as a high school special education teacher and seven years as a Director of Special Education at the Mellen Public Schools. I, then, went back to work part time as Director of Special Education for two more years in the same district. I believe that the main question is “What is in the best interest if the child?” I am pleased to say that after all those years I keep in contact with many of my past students. I live in Drummond, Wisconsin with my husband. We travel quite often with children and grandchildren living in lower Michigan, Washington, and Nevada. If one was to ask me my hobby – travel would be it! We belong to the Cable Lion and participate, regularly, in many local fundraisers for the community and local school district. I serve as a Director for the Cable Lions. As an observer, I believe that See My Art, Inc. has validated the artistic talents of those with disabilities. I’ve purchased cards and looked at items made by the disabled at varies art venues. I’ve seen the pride the artists have in their work. This, indeed, opens doors for the community in so many ways – Keep SMART Strong indeed!

Stacy Hurst – Secretary

My husband, Tom Thornquest, and I are from Minnesota and have been coming to Cable for several years for mountain biking, hiking, cross-country skiing – enjoying all the natural beauty of the area.  In June 2021, we decided to sell our house in Golden Valley, MN and move to Cable.  Best decision ever! We bought a home on Perry Lake, where we live with our two dogs, Juneau (Newfie) and Lucy (Heeler) and our cat, Biggie. We both work full-time from home, which is pretty great; I love being able get outside to see the birds, the loons and eagles, the lake, everything that surrounds us, all while I’m working.

For the first couple of years, we lived here, I worked at Rivers’ Eatery a few evenings a week where I met many wonderful people and made new friends – it truly made me feel part of the community.  Now, I’m also a Loon Ranger for Perry Lake, through the LoonWatch program at Northland College. In addition, I volunteer for various bike / community events throughout the year.

Early in 2023, I had the honor and pleasure of being elected to the SMART Board of Directors, where I serve as the Board Secretary. The SMART artists stories are what inspired me to join: each artist has unique abilities and they’re applying their creativity and vision to express themselves and to share those experiences with others. I’m here to partner with the artists on their journeys, to be their advocate and to create awareness of all that SMART has to offer.


Shawna Barnes – Treasurer

My husband, Justin, and I moved to Cable (from Maine) in April 2022. As soon as we stepped foot into the community, it felt like home. I have done art as therapy work since my medical retirement from the Army in 2011. I discovered the benefits personally when I began sculpting in 2012. It helped me process and work through my PTSD. In 2015, I began teaching adaptive art/art accessibility to K-12 arts educators in Maine and was a member of MALI (Maine Arts Leadership Initiative). From 2017-2022, I taught art as therapy classes at the Travis Mills Foundation, a completely accessible retreat for veterans and their families.

Healing through the arts is a passion of mine. When I found out about See My Art and was invited to join the board, it was a no-brainer. I live the life that the mission promotes as a disabled veteran artist and art instructor. I’m so thankful to be a part of such an amazing organization!

Sarah Boles

I have made my home in the Cable/Namakagon area since 1988. My professional work is in the field of natural resources, ecological landscape design and wildlife ecology.

I love our home and community. I served for 17 years on the Namakagon Volunteer Fire Dept. as a Captain and EMT, I retired in 2020.  

I believe in SMART’s mission and have supported SMART with membership and monetary contributions since its inception. At this writing I am still working professionally so my time to commit as a Board Member is limited. 

My interest in dance/movement began with formal dance classes in Tap, Jazz, Modern, Ballet, Middle Eastern Folk.  This interest has expanded to learning methods that are adaptive to include people with physical and mental challenges. These modalities contribute to the Brain, Body and Spirit connection and really bring Joy and a sense of accomplishment for everyone that is involved.  

Anita Warren

I love the north woods, the arts, and have a desire to help enrich the lives of folks with disabilities. My son Alex Mann is in the autism spectrum. Alex joins Sara Balbin on radio interviews and has blossomed as a radio personality promoting SMART’s annual events and mission “Unlocking Doors and Opening Minds through Art for individuals with Disabilities”. In particular, for SMART I’m honored to manage the sale and distribution of the artists original greeting cards. I look forward to continuing and developing this role through internet sales as it grows in our beautiful north wood’s communities, and world.