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You now have an opportunity to SCORE in northeast MS

New Albany, MS– Yes, SCORE is finally coming to us in northeast MS.

Formerly known as the Service Corp Of Retired Executives, SCORE is a non-profit extension of the Small Business Administration.  Since 1964, SCORE has been offering free mentoring, seminars and peer to peer roundtable discussions to new or prospective small business owners, or to business owners who may have hit a snag in growth or development and just need some reenergizing. The services are offered free of charge by over 22,000 volunteers around the country. Score has provided services to nearly one million small businesses since its beginning.

Several years ago Michael Harris, head of the MS Development authority’s entrepreneur center in Jackson, MS was overwhelmed with clients who wanted to start their own businesses. Harris reached out to SCORE for help. Harris’ wife, Mary, then led the charge to establish a chapter for SCORE in Metro Jackson. She reached out to executives with time enough on their hands to go through the training to become mentors, and to others to serve in various areas of leadership, event planning or administration. As volunteers signed up and mentors were certified, Harris developed the strategic plan to have additional branches and chapters in other areas in the state with growth potential.

Michael Hale

Michael Hale

The charge is being led to have a chapter in Northeast MS by New Albany native Michael Hale, who has had a 50 year career in business, runs 9 small businesses around the country and sits on corporate boards for companies domiciled in CA, MS and VT. Hale completed his mentor training over a year ago and has already helped about 25 clients around MS. “It’s not that difficult,” says Hale. “If you can find an hour or two a week, you can keep up with the development on a number of fronts, and the questions start-ups have are easily answered from experience.” Helping by coaching someone provides personal rewards.

Denotee Martin

Denotee Martin

Support for this effort comes from Denotee Martin, who, a number of years ago, turned what he was teaching in school into a second career in construction. From a small beginning, Martin built his company into a success, with major construction projects in a number of states. Denotee continues to offer his services as a consultant on construction issues to a variety of clients, and also serves as program administrator for the Minority PUL Alliance, which he founded along the way. Martin also is a certified SCORE mentor.

If you are interested in learning more about SCORE and how it can help you, just go to SCORE.ORG. If you are interested in finding a little time to give to this worthwhile program, you can also sign up at If you want to speak to someone about it, just call Michael Hale at 662-988-3375 or email him at

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