SCORE District 480 Offers Free, Six-Part Webinar

Close, Survive or Thrive? The Small Business Challenge Today

July 16 – August 20

Lakeland, Fla., June 30, 2020 — For the first time, SCORE Chapters within the nonprofit’s District 480 are joining forces to offer small business owners throughout the region the critical guidance needed today to determine whether they should stay in business and the best steps for moving forward. In a special six-part webinar series, presenters from five SCORE Chapters will guide small business owners—the backbone of the local and national economy—through an easy-to-follow, four-step process for meeting today’s small business challenges and creating a path for the future.

Small business owners need to learn how to take action to preserve their livelihoods and those of their employees now more than ever. According to an April survey from Main Street America, 7.5 million small businesses nationwide will shut permanently if business disruption caused by COVID-19 continues unabated. In Southwest Florida, in Lee County alone, a recent survey by Florida Gulf Coast University’s Regional Economic Research Institute shows that 56% surveyed businesses reported a decrease in demand of more than 50% as a result of the pandemic.

Each webinar will take place from noon to 1 p.m. The series is free. Participants are encouraged to attend each one for comprehensive guidance. Registrants will be enrolled in the entire series upon registration.

July 16: Close, Survive or Thrive – The Small Business Challenge Today: Assess your current financial situation, analyze the state of your business, and communicate your plan to staff and customers. (Presented by Eileen Buchanan, SWFL SCORE)

July 23: Show Me the Money – Assessing Your Financial Situation: In this webinar, participants will be shown how to use financial information to assess the current state of their business, how to use that information for making critical decisions about closing or surviving and thriving, and how to manage cash flow in the short term to set the stage for thriving in the future. (Presented by Henry McCabe, Port Charlotte SCORE)

July 30: Analyze Your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats and Act on Your Results: It’s time to re-analyze and document your strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities and threats since the emergence of COVID-19. Then the brainstorming begins to develop your best path forward. (Presented by Walter McCracken, Pinellas SCORE)

August 6: Putting It Together in an Actionable Plan – the Business Model Canvas: Learn how to use the Business Model Canvas, a tool that allows you to capture the key ingredients of your plan on a single page, using a rigorous, thoughtful process. (Presented by Doug Barber, Manasota SCORE)

August 13: The In-Business Guide to Tough Times – Marketing on a Dime: Get your name and product out to potential customers and clients without spending a lot of money. (Presented by Sharon Schulman, SWFL SCORE)

August 20: The Small Business Legal Challenges in the Age of COVID-19: What new risks does your business face today and how will you protect yourself and your business from liability? (Presented by Patrick H. Neale, Attorney at Law, Naples)


To register:



Eileen Buchanan

Eileen Buchanan was the Founder of Fastrak Training Inc., which trained software professionals in government and industry. It was recognized in the 1990s by INC. magazine as one of the 500 fastest-growing, privately owned companies in America. She has been a SCORE volunteer for 15 years and is the chapter chair for the Southwest Florida SCORE chapter.

Henry McCabe

Henry McCabe has been a SCORE mentor and educator since 2003, when he sold the successful printing business he founded in 1986. Prior to that, he had been CFO and CEO of a welding equipment manufacturer. He gained deep knowledge of how enterprises operate, and how their operations can be represented in financial models as a senior financial analyst and manager for a division of a large aerospace manufacturer.

Walter McCracken, Ph.D., MBA

Walter McCracken, Ph.D., advises companies in technology-oriented business and program management, mainly in the aerospace/defense industry. He earned his Ph.D. in materials science from the University of Florida and MBA from the University of South Florida. He was Director of Advanced Programs for SRI International, where he oversaw government contracts and was responsible for the daily Marine Technology Program operations. He has founded or co-founded several diverse businesses.

Douglas Barber

Douglas Barber has been a SCORE mentor and educator since 2009. He began his career as a builder of single- family residential homes in Western New York, where he developed several rural subdivisions with 5-plus-acre lots. His teaching career began at Alfred State College, SUNY in Construction Management and continued in higher education. Barber has 17 years of classroom teaching and 14 years in college administration. He currently is involved in real estate in Belize.

Sharon Schulman

Sharon Schulman recently retired as the Special Advisor to the President of the William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy at Stockton University. During her tenure, she held positions of Chief University Relations and Marketing Officer, Chief Executive Officer for External Affairs and Institutional Research, Interim Chief Development Officer, and Executive Director of the Stockton Foundation. Her portfolio includes marketing, public relations, publications, web and social media communications, and government relations.

Patrick Neale

Patrick Neale is an attorney, civil mediator and arbitrator who practices law in the areas of foreclosure prevention and defense, bankruptcy, land use, construction contracts, real estate, zoning, and administrative law. Neale moved to Collier County in 1987. He has served on and chaired many local charity boards and is currently on the boards of Avow Hospice, the Culinary and Hospitality Education Foundation (CHEF), and the Collier County Bar Association. He has received numerous awards of distinction. Neale is an adjunct professor at FGCU.



The Central Florida SCORE chapter has over 20 volunteer mentors who leverage their expertise to help small businesses learn to manage a wide range of issues. SCORE, America’s premier source of free and confidential small business advice for entrepreneurs and small businesses, is funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Since 1964, SCORE has helped more than 11 million aspiring entrepreneurs. Each year, SCORE’s over 10,000 volunteer business experts provide hundreds of thousands of free small business mentoring sessions and local/online educational services to clients at all points of their business lifecycle through 300 chapters nationwide. In 2018, SCORE volunteers provided 4.36+ million hours to help create more than 32,000 small businesses and 103,000 full-time, part-time and contractor jobs. For more information: