Auctioneer inducted into Hall of Fame | SteamboatToday.com

Auctioneer inducted into Hall of Fame

National association honors Steamboat's Cookie Lockhart

Mike McCollum

— Cookie Lockhart believes auctioneering needed a trailblazer to break the gender line, and she was up to the task.

“I had a good voice for it,” she said. “A good, strong, deep voice. People didn’t get tired of hearing me. I had a lot of fortitude and some sense of the way business goes. At least I think I do, so I guess I do.”

Lockhart was inducted into the National Auctioneers Association Hall of Fame on July 21 in San Diego, Calif. In the 58-year history of the organization, Lockhart is the only woman to receive the honor. She previously was inducted into the Colorado Auctioneers Association Hall of Fame.

“Not bad for a little Steamboat girl,” said Lockhart, 69, who was joined at the ceremony by friends and family. “A thousand people stood up when they said my name. I about passed out.”

Lockhart completed auction school in 1963, the only woman out of a class of 126 men. She joined her family’s auction business, Lockhart Auction and Realty, established by her father, Si Lockhart, in Steamboat.

“It was just something I started to do and decided to have a go at it,” she said. “Both my dad and brother were auctioneers at the time, but there are not many farms and ranches around anymore and the business went astray.”

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Lockhart eventually moved the business to Denver – then moved again to Charleston, S.C. – and has handled thousands of auctions across the country.

“It’s an art and a skill, you have to be up on what’s going on in the world,” said Lockhart, who added that whether it’s auctioning guns or asbestos-filled houses, she must be aware of relevant laws and regulations.

“There’s a lot that goes into it,” said Lockhart whose next auction in Steamboat will be a charity auction for Partners in Routt County at Catamount Ranch & Club. “When I’m not working, I go to school.”

Known for her distinctive sense of style, Lockhart, who described herself as the “nation’s leading lady auctioneer,” stands out in a crowd. With her Western attire, a cowboy hat and her trademark glasses, Lockhart said she’ll never lose her pioneering roots.

“The one thing I had to survive on was true grit,” she said. “You can’t ever give up in this business. You gotta keep working at it. There’s a lot of getting knocked down.”

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