SCORE “Counselors to America’s Small Business” to Serve as Judges in

Washington, D.C.—The SCORE Association “Counselors to America’s Small Business” will help determine the winning entry in a national contest that will award $50,000 to a new or emerging entrepreneur. The Best Business Plan Contest is sponsored by the Ford Motor Company and DiversityInc.

The contest encourages entrepreneurs and new business owners to submit a business plan that will be judged on a number of objective criteria by a panel of SCORE business counselors. The grand prize in the contest is $50,000, with two first-prize winners receiving $25,000 each. Winners will receive small business counseling from a SCORE volunteer to assist in business plan development and start-up operations.

SCORE CEO Ken Yancey says, “SCORE is pleased to offer its services to this initiative that encourages entrepreneurs to follow their dreams.” Yancey adds, “A sound business plan is essential to the success of any business. SCORE counselors provide entrepreneurs nationwide with business planning guidance that can increase their prospects for success.”

Plans submitted to the contest will be reviewed by a panel of SCORE counselors and evaluated on a number of factors, including: presentation, anticipated sales, potential competition and overall benefit to the community. Entries must include type of business, product or service provided, pricing considerations, target market and competition and general operations. More information on the contest is available at www.ford.com/go/best or www.diversityinc.com/best.

The SCORE Association was formed in 1964 as a nonprofit association dedicated to entrepreneur education and the formation, growth and success of small business nationwide. For information about starting or operating a small business, call 1-800/634-0245 for the SCORE chapter nearest you. More than 10,500 volunteer members provide individual counseling and business workshops for aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners. SCORE has assisted more than 6 million Americans with small business counseling. Visit SCORE on the Web (www.score.org).