Madeleine Noveck at home with a few boxes of cookies
By Sabina Mollot
Meet the savviest businessperson in Stuyvesant Town.
At the ripe old age of seven, Madeleine Noveck, a second year Girl Scout, has secured the title of the third highest seller of Girl Scout cookies in the entire city.
Last year, Noveck was also no slouch — selling over 1,000 boxes of the traditional American treat —but this year, she topped her own results, selling 1,403.
According to her mother, Rebecca Carroll, going on the selling spree was purely Noveck’s decision, though Carroll would accompany her when she went from building to building in Stuy Town, knocking on neighbors’ doors.
“She came up with the 30-second elevator speech,” said Carroll, adding that her daughter did actually use it in the elevator, chatting up residents she knew and didn’t know. Though not everyone bought a box of the $4 cookies, Noveck said she found the experience of selling fun.
“Everyone was nice,” she said. “Some of them didn’t have much money, but they were still nice about it.”
She and Carroll also ended up getting to know their neighbors better through the experience, even meeting a woman who said she was the oldest resident in the complex at 105 years old. Noveck also knocked on the door of a resident about to celebrate a birthday, and she and her mother got invited in for cake. “It’s been a great experience,” said Carroll, “a community building experience.”
As for the customers who did buy, the most popular cookie choices were Thin Mints — also Noveck’s favorite — and the caramel-flavored Samoas. People who didn’t want any cookies still bought some, since there was an option to have their purchases shipped overseas to U.S. troops. And Noveck also did some selling at her school, around 100 boxes, to teachers.
The selling did get tiring at times, though. After hitting the 800 mark, Noveck found herself tempted to call it quits for the evening, since she was thirsty.
“I said ‘mom, I’m thirsty,’” said Noveck, “and she said, ‘If we go downstairs to get water, we won’t be able to sell anymore tonight,’ so I said, ‘I wanna sell.’”
Of course, it helped that there were some great prizes at stake. Girls who sold over 1,000 boxes of cookies got an iPad Mini, which Noveck won last year. This year, she said she’s going to give her iPad to her brother Stephen.
As for the money generated by the sales, it goes to Girl Scouts programming like trips, as well as support for the St. Francis Xavier Homeless Shelter.
Unlike Noveck, who’s a student at P.S. 110, the top two sellers in the city were middle schoolers.
The top seller, Najah Lorde, sold 2,833 while the second top seller, Olivia Cranshaw, sold 2,141, the Daily News reported in March.
Girl Scout cookies, for which there’s always been a demand, are sold throughout the winter season by the organization’s young members. Recently, Girl Scouts also began selling through food trucks and in this month, it was announced that there would be a pop-up cookie shop in the Flatiron District. The shop, which opened on March 17, will remain open for business through May 8, Tuesdays through Thursdays at 43 West 23rd Street (between Fifth and Sixth Avenues).
However, Carroll, who works in marketing, said she didn’t think the new shop would cut into the girls’ sales. Because, she explained, “There’s a huge demand. Everyone smiles when you say Girl Scout cookies.”
Though the selling was hard work, Noveck said “yeah,” when asked if she thought she could work in sales when she grows up. In fact, when she joined Girl Scouts it was with the idea that she could sell cookies competitively. “I think I want to do it again,” she said.