On November 14th, SCORE of the Grand Strand announced its annual small business success winners. The dinner is a celebration of small business – for clients and for Friends of SCORE that help promote small business success such as Chambers of Commerce and Foundations.
A $10,000 startup grant was awarded. The grant was offered by an anonymous donor to a startup business, based on the business plan that demonstrated the highest likelihood of success. Selected from 40 applicants, Theresa DeCindio of Critter Comforts, a pet boarding service, in Conway was the winner. The business plans were judged by SCORE mentors with the winner chosen by a panel of local business leaders.
Two Small Businesses of the Year were recognized. The awardees were selected from over 2000 local small businesses that SCORE has helped this year. Both were recognized for their accomplishments and success as SCORE clients, particularly in job creation in our area:
- Mike Ostrander, President of Para Basic Ambulance Services of Georgetown.
- Para Basic provides patient transfer services to residents of Horry, Georgetown and Williamsburg counties.
- Bryan Insurance Agency, begun in 2010 by HP Bryan, with offices in Pawleys Island and Myrtle Beach. It specializes in homeowners property insurance throughout the Grand Strand.
Also recognized were several SCORE mentors for their contributions to small businesses over many years. Harold Swanner was the recipient of the Bob Hower Award for his distinguished service to small businesses. Also recognized were John Hogan, Bob Terrell, Bob Goroski and Cary Rowell.
SCORE is a national, all-volunteer organization that provides mentoring and education to small businesses at no cost. It is dedicated to helping the nation’s economy, one small business at a time. Nationally, SCORE clients helped create 60,000 small businesses and created or saved 90,000 jobs in the last year.
SCORE helps small businesses startup, grow and manage their growth. It typically works with them on issues such as business plans, marketing strategies, financial management and financing their business. In 2011, Grand Strand, SCORE provided one-on-one mentoring to 250 small businesses and conducted over 60 workshops with 1700 attendees.