Orange County SCORE was named the National Chapter of the Year by SCORE and the U.S. Small Business Administration.
The local organization, which provides mentoring and workshops to startups and small business owners, was honored for its customer satisfaction, growth in serving entrepreneurs and community service efforts.
Orange County SCORE District Director Bill Morland and chapter Chairman Carl Woodard accepted the honor during National Small Business Week, which runs through Tuesday, in Washington, D.C.
"Orange County SCORE makes a tremendous impact on the success of the communities they serve by helping small businesses start, grow and create jobs," said SCORE CEO Ken Yancey. "Orange County SCORE is a national leader in providing services and resources that benefit entrepreneurs."
The local chapter's volunteer counselors offered more than 17,000 services through mentoring sessions and workshops in 2009. It's a 29 percent increase, compared to 2008. In addition, Orange County SCORE led all chapters with the most clients served between 2004 and 2009.
Among its platforms: the Women in Business Breakfast Series, which allows female entrepreneurs to discuss ideas, their experience and advice.
"We salute Orange County SCORE counselors for their volunteerism and excellence," said Yancey.
The Women's Economic Self-Sufficiency Team at Roswell Women's Business Center in New Mexico garnered the Women's Business Center of Excellence honor; and the Watertown Small Business Development Center at Jefferson Community College in New York received the Small Business Development Center Service Excellence and Innovation Center award.
SCORE, Women's Business Centers and Small Business Development Centers work with the SBA to offer small business counseling and training throughout the U.S. Since its inception in 1964, SCORE has supported more than 8.5 million entrepreneurs and small business owners.
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