​​With a total of three retail locations and a corporate office, Cothron's Security Professionals has been a part of the Austin community since 1948, offering locksmith, alarm, safe and security services.

The family-owned and -operated business is celebrating its 75th anniversary in business. Now operated by Steve Cothron, founder Olen Cothron’s son, Cothron’s has a total of 78 employees.

“We’ve intertwined with the growth of the city for a long time,” Steve Cothron said. “We’re fortunate enough to have long-term relationships with our customers.”

Most lock companies only consist of around five employees, making Cothron’s part of the top 10% for size in the United States.

“Our employees and customers get the experience and knowledge of a big-time company, but with the feel of a small, local company,” Cothron’s accounting manager Angela Powers said.

The story

Steve Cothron’s father trained as a locksmith in San Diego and moved to Austin after learning the city was in need of a locksmith. The first location was off Fourth and Congress in what was a magazine store.

As the business grew, it moved around Austin—near Lamar by Strait Music Company and Shoal Creek Saloon—then Rio Grande in the '70s.

In the 1970s, it became common practice for locksmiths to pair up with the bicycle industry, Steve Cothron said. Until about 2008, Cothron’s sold bikes out of four locations around Austin that also served as lock shops.

“A lot of people have stories about getting their first bikes out there,” Steve Cothron said. “You run into people, you know, but we’re not in the bike business anymore.”

Cothron’s today

Today, Cothron’s serves both residential and commercial customers, offering traditional mechanical solutions and improving them with modern technology.

At Cothron’s, customers can find:
  • Electronic security;
  • Door hardware;
  • Doors, frames and glass;
  • Locksmith services; and
  • Safes including the moving and installation.
Aside from Cothron’s South Austin location, the locksmith and security company can be found in North Austin and in Round Rock.

“Our deal has always been that you leave with a satisfied customer,” Steve Cothron said. “Keep your customers happy, and everything else falls into place.”

1315 W. Ben White Blvd., Austin. 512-447-1883. www.cothrons.com

Editor's note: This article was updated to reflect a total of 78 employees at the company.