Betty Taylor

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameElizabeth Garner "Betty"•Taylor (-Campbell)
Used nameBetty•Taylor
Born22 February 1916 in Ingersoll, Ontario (CAN)
Died5 February 1977 in Ottawa, Ontario (CAN)
Measurements167 cm / 53 kg
AffiliationsHOC, Hamilton (CAN) / McMaster Marauders, Hamilton (CAN)
NOC Canada
Medals OG
Gold 0
Silver 0
Bronze 1
Total 1


Betty Taylor, who specialized in the 80 metre hurdles, was one of Canada’s most notable female track and field athletes during the 1930s. She took up the sport in 1930 and her first major international tournament was the 1932 Summer Olympics, where she was eliminated in the opening round of her specialty. Nonetheless, her athletic prowess was such that she entered McMaster University in 1933 on a scholarship from her club, Hamilton Olympic. She was also fourth, behind golfer Ada MacKenzie, Hilda Strike, and Mary Frizzell, in the first-ever vote for Canada’s female athlete of the year, which would eventually become the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award. She had more luck on the international scene at the 1934 British Empire Games, where she won silver in the 80 m hurdles behind Marjorie Clark of South Africa. That year she lost out in the voting for both the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award and the Velma Springstead Trophy (another new award for Canada’s top female athlete) to swimmer Phyllis Dewar, who had won four gold medals at the Empire Games.

Taylor retained her national title in 1935 and 1936 and was again selected to represent Canada at the Olympics. There she won a bronze medal in the 80 m hurdles in a race where the top four competitors set a new Olympic record of 11.7 and were separated by only seven hundredths of a second. Her accomplishment earned her both the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award and the Velma Springstead Trophy. She graduated from McMaster in 1937 and moved to Ottawa the following year to take up a position as a school teacher. She had mostly given up on active competition following the Berlin Olympics, but the cancellation of the 1940 Games ensured her retirement. She has been made a member of the Canadian Olympic (1968) and McMaster Marauders (1990) Halls of Fame.

Personal Best: 80H – 11.81 (1936).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1932 Summer Olympics Athletics CAN Betty Taylor
80 metres Hurdles, Women (Olympic) 4 h1 r1/2
1936 Summer Olympics Athletics CAN Betty Taylor
80 metres Hurdles, Women (Olympic) 3 Bronze
4 × 100 metres Relay, Women (Olympic) Canada DNS

Special Notes