Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

Updated: June 13, 2023

SCORE Maine honors small businesses that stand out

Oyster fisherwoman on a boat File photo / Courtesy of Cranberry Oysters Lauren Gray of Cranberry Oysters won the Aquaculture Successful Business Award from SCORE Maine in 2023.

Representing sectors from farming to janitorial services, eight small businesses and one nonprofit were honored last week by SCORE Maine, whose volunteer mentors helped thousands of clients launch 235 startups in 2022.

This year’s winners, announced at a celebratory event last week in Freeport, include Lauren Gray, founder of Cranberry Oysters, and Manasse Shingiro, a Rwandan genocide survivor who founded Casco Bay Cleaning in Portland.

Gray was the winner of the Aquaculture Successful Business Award, while Shingiro won the Diverse Successful Business Award. 

“The small business award winners represent the backbone of the Maine economy,” said Nancy Strojny, assistant district director at SCORE Maine and a Mainebiz Woman to Watch honoree in 2017. 

"Beyond providing job growth,” she added, “they help preserve Maine’s unique culture and communities.”

2023 winners

  • Hospitality Small Business Award: Kate Griffin and John Peelen, Maggie Mae’s specialty retail store, Yarmouth
  • Home-based Successful Business Award: Hilary Crowell, the Cultivated Thread, Wiscasset
  • Digital Successful Small Business Award; Anush Hansen, Balanced Card Sorts
  • Agricultural Successful Business Award: Colleen Hanlon-Smith, Daybreak Growers Alliance, Unity
  • Aquaculture Successful Business Award: Lauren Gray, Cranberry Oysters
  • Diverse Successful Business Award: Manasse Shingiro, Casco Bay Cleaning, Portland
  • Woman-Owned Successful Business Award: Amanda Lacey, Bijou Build, Camden 
  • Innovative Small Business Award: Toby Dewhurst, Kelson Marine, Portland 
  • Partner Success Award: Hannah Cyrus, Bangor Library digital librarian, and the Bangor Public Library

SCORE, which has local chapters in southern, central and northern Maine and collaborates with a number of organizations across the state, is a resource partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration. 

Shannon Kinney, founder and chief client success officer at Dream Local Digital, a Thomaston-based digital marketing agency, was the keynote speaker at last week's SCORE awards luncheon.

"It was an incredible honor to be featured as the keynote speaker at the annual SCORE Awards banquet, where I shared the six top lessons I've learned on my entrepreneurial journey," she told Mainebiz.

She added that "it was so inspiring to hear the stories of the nine award recipients, and to see that our own SCORE chapter here in Maine is No. 1 in the nation for impact and satisfaction ... Just amazing!"

Kinney was honored as a Mainebiz Woman to Watch in 2013.

Sign up for Enews

Related Content


Order a PDF