Kae McNeil is the chair of the board of directors for the Aberdeen branch of SCORE.

SCORE is a resource for businesses or entrepreneurs considering expansion, starting their own business, facing challenges or needing “a boost” in some phase of their business. Nationally, SCORE is celebrating its 50th year in 2014.

The mission of SCORE, “Counselors to America’s Businesses,” is to provide professional guidance and information accessible to all to maximize the success of America’s existing and emerging small businesses and to grow successful small businesses one business at a time. To meet this mission, the Aberdeen SCORE group offers training seminars and one-on-one counseling with local volunteer mentors who are experienced business owners or managers.

Local mentors are available to assist businesses or individuals with specific topics and to answer questions related to their own situations. Commonly SCORE mentors will ask questions, discuss resources and provide direction to determine things like start up costs, identify potential customers, forecast sales and competition, operating costs and how many employees will be needed. The Aberdeen SCORE branch works closely with the Small Business Development Center. Kelly Weaver and Carla Burns at the SBDC schedule one-to-one meetings and assist with training events. The national SCORE website also offers many resources and email counseling at score.org.