Youth Entrepreneurship

Steve Strauss, founder of, explains what makes a business contract valid and gives tips for entering into one correctly.

Q: I have been doing business with a guy for a few years. Last month, I found someone who offers what he has been selling me for a lot less and so I severed our relationship. He now informs me that we have a “contract” and that I am obligated to give him 60 days' notice. That cannot be right, can it?



Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce


The Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce is a model for non-profits supporting community development the nation wide.  Since 1952, this chamber has been enabling the community's business people to thrive by providing opportunities for leadership, networking, innovative business programs, education, and giving back to the community.

Beth Johnston, EVP
My Location
Boca Raton FL
United States
Year Company Formed
My Successes

Beth Johnston is the current Executive Vice President of the Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce.  Serving the chamber’s 1200 members, Beth oversees many of the programs that set this chamber apart as an example of excellence in the non-profit community.  These programs include the Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA), an after-school program that takes students through the process of starting and running real businesses over the course of an academic year.  

In 1991, the Board of Directors of the Great Boca Raton Chamber created the Golden Bell Foundation dedicated to supporting the Boca Raton Public School System.  Since its inception, the foundation has donated $1 million to local public schools.

The Greater Boca Chamber seeks to support the local non-profit community by planning and hosting Boca Festival Days which is a month-long celebration during August which highlights and supports these organizations.

The Chamber also supports young professionals and women business owners in the area by offering networking opportunities and educational programs tailored to these groups.

What's Great About My Mentor?

The greatest challenge for the Boca Chamber YEA! program was the need for smart business people to mentor students.  The logical place was to go to the SCORE South Florida Chapter for help.  The Chamber needed mentors to guide the students when writing each segment of their business plan. The mentors worked on the students' PowerPoint presentations and the corresponding speech cards with the students.  They helped the students with market research, product descriptions and the strategies for implementation of their business.  The six individuals who stepped up to help these students went above and beyond the call of duty.    The SCORE South Florida mentors who participated are:  Wolfgang Kurpiers, Ronald Popp, Martin Kahn, Herbert Beyenbach, Carl Isbitts and Arnold Gresser.

How SCORE Helped

The YEA! program adds an entire layer to the services that are offered by a Chamber of Commerce.  Never before have Chambers leaped into the business market of students under that age of 18.  However, GBRCC recognizes that there are many bright ideas amongst these students - they just need to be cultivated.  Beth Johnston comments on their joint effort with SCORE to offer this program saying, "The SCORE organization is an important piece of the puzzle as it is a true partner to entrepreneurship and business."

Creative Jewelry by Bridgeja' LLC Receives Help From SCORE Mentor

It was an emergency trip to the orthodontist that brought Bridgeja’ Baker face-to-face with her future passion; she had stumbled upon a bead store next door to the doctor’s office that offered classes in creating handmade jewelry.  10-year old Bridgeja’ immediately signed up and soon began selling her custom creations online, at festivals and events and for custom orders including wedding parties.  She started her business, Creative Jewelry by Bridgeja’, to create one-of-a-kind, show-stopping pieces using sterling silver, gold, gemstones, pearls, and Swarovski crystals.

RoundtableBridgeja with SCORESmall Business Senate
Bridgeja' Baker attends a roundtable discussion with 2011 SCORE Small Business Senate Champion, Mary Landrieu 
SCORE Awards
Bridgeja' Baker
My Location
New Orleans LA
United States
Year Company Formed
My Successes

At Bridgeja’s first show she earned over $1,100 selling her jewelry creations.  It was at that moment that she dedicated herself to turning her hobby into a full-fledged business venture.  Now 14 years old and with nearly 35 beading classes under her belt, Bridgeja’ has created a viable business garnering several awards honoring her innovative work as an entrepreneur as well as her dedication to philanthropy.  A portion of the proceeds from her business is donated to community organizations each year including the SPCA, Children’s Hospital and Unity of Greater New Orleans.  Creative Jewelry by Bridgeja’ even received a letter from Michelle Obama saying she may be considered to design jewelry for the First Lady in the future.

What's Great About My Mentor?

SCORE mentor Veronica Johnson corresponded via email with Bridgeja' giving valuable guidance regarding unique marketing techniques and inexpensive promotion ideas to boost her brand.  Johnson also recommended several community organizations and programs that Bridgeja' should use to her maximum benefit.

How SCORE Helped

Through SCORE's email mentoring program, Bridgeja' was paired with a seasoned business expert that helped propel her venture to new heights.

Entrepreneurs to Receive Advice

Mon, 2012-06-25 09:18

In a partnership between novices and professionals, 22 of Washington County’s prospective future small business owners finalized business plans with help from SCORE volunteers as part of a project for Shelley Bracken’s entrepreneurship class at Pine View High School.

Bracken felt the students needed additional business expertise and perspective during the formulation of their plans, so she contacted Paul Campbell, chairperson for the local SCORE organization, early in the semester.  After one session with the SCORE volunteers, students were elated.

Sometimes it’s hard to play by the rules, but what if you’re the one writing them?

Every small business does need some basic rules in place. Along with articles of incorporation, corporate bylaws provide a major--if not the major--foundation for your small business.

Not only do they help keep everything legally in sync with state requirements, they also map out how your company is run and operated.

Sometimes it’s hard to play by the rules, but what if you’re the one writing them? Every small business does need some basic rules in place. Along with articles of incorporation, corporate bylaws provide a major--if not the major--foundation for your small business. Not only do they help keep everything legally in sync with state requirements, they also map out how your company is run and operated.


After incorporating or forming an LLC, there are ongoing compliance requirements for your company.

These compliance requirements vary by state and fall into two categories: internal and external. Internal requirements need to be fulfilled by the directors and shareholders or members and managers and must be documented as part of company records. External compliance requirements are imposed by the state in which your business is incorporated and any state where it is registered to transact business, or Foreign Qualified.


S corporation, C corporation, Limited Partnership, or LLC--choosing a business entity structure can be daunting and a bit overwhelming.

The Incorporation Wizard is an online tool that helps you evaluate business forms based on your specific business needs.

As you answer business-related questions across six categories, the Wizard ranks each entity type based on how well each may align your requirements. 

Want to find out which business type might be right for you? Visit the: Incorporation Wizard.


Special tax law provisions may help taxpayers and businesses recover financially from the impact of a disaster, especially when the federal government declares their location to be a major disaster area. Depending on the circumstances, the IRS may grant additional time to file returns and pay taxes. Both individuals and businesses in a federally declared disaster area can get a faster refund by claiming losses related to the disaster on the tax return for the previous year, usually by filing an amended return.
The IRS also offers audio presentations on Planning for Disaster. These presentations discuss business continuity planning, insurance coverage, recording keeping and other tips to stay in business after a major disaster. 
Visit their Disaster Assistance and Emergency Relief for Individuals and Businesses section of the IRS site for more.


The IRS maintains a valuable collection of resources for small businesses called the Small Business and Self-Employed Tax Center.  Visit their site for forms, articles, videos, webinars and audio presentations for small businesses.

South Palm Beach SCORE Hosts DECA Florida State Business Plan Champions

Wed, 2012-03-21 10:26

On March 15th 2012 the South Palm Beach SCORE chapter hosted the DECA Florida state Business Plan champions. Hannah Lyon and Sara Bergida, both 17 years old, laid out their business plan in a presentation to South Palm Beach SCORE chapter mentors, for critique and review. After the presentation the young ladies opened the floor up to a lively Q & A, and made it clear that they did not want SCORE mentors to hold back. South Palm Beach SCORE Mentors commented that the students were quick with their intelligent answers and explanations of their plan.

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