We had the good fortune of connecting with Christie Halverson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Christie, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I had been a stay-at-home mom for 18 years, and my oldest son was getting ready to launch and leave the nest. I started to panic, and knew that I needed something to focus on for the next stage of my life. I spent a lot of time talking to friends, my husband, and others, trying to figure out what I would want to do. I had always been a baker and loved experimenting in the kitchen. Secretly, I had a dream of one day starting a bakery, and my husband was incredibly supportive and encouraged me to do it. We put together a business plan, I started creating recipes, and The Cookie Rack was born. We had no idea if it would work or be well received, and were so thrilled to find that we had sold out completely on day one by 3 o’clock in the afternoon.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Our slogan is “Pretty & Unconventional” and that sums up our cookies as well as our corporate philosophy. Our cookies are beautiful, but unlike anything you’ve ever had before. They are pretty enough to put out for a wedding, yet delicious and decadent for a midday treat. We are not your everyday cookie.
Our first store in Frisco opened in November of 2018, and we were blown over by the success. It became apparent to us rather quickly that this was a concept people liked, and our fresh flavors were delicious and fast becoming a staple for our customers. We began looking for more locations, hoping to grow our brand in the DFW area. We signed the leases on two more locations in February of 2020, two weeks before the pandemic hit. It was devastating to watch our revenue decline as the lockdown began, and I worried for our employees and the state of our future. We tightened our belts, cut costs where we could, and proceeded with the second and third locations anyway.
We opened our Prosper store in August of 2020, and our Dallas store in December of 2020. It has not been easy, and we have struggled, but I am proud to say that not a single employee has been let go as a result of the pandemic, and we have continued to make ends meet. We began offering delivery, expanded our online offerings, and continued to cut costs. I am incredibly proud of our employees who stuck with us, and helped to keep this company going. Our loyal customers are our heroes and we appreciate the support so much.
We feature 14 cookies in our case everyday, plus one flavor of the month. We have our signature frosted cookies, as well as a few “naked” cookies without frosting. We believe in using only real ingredients and our cookies are baked and decorated fresh every day.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d like to dedicate this to my husband, Josh. He is a man who dreams and does it, and encourages me to be brave and get outside of my comfort zone. He literally puts his money where his mouth is, and supports everything I do. He is my best friend, my partner, and the person who gets me through every day.