Betty was raised on a farm in Indiana. As a child, she sketched people and her farm environment. These experiences would influence her interest in landscape and Plein air painting.
She received an AB in studio arts, art education, and art history at Indiana University. She studied Art Education at the University of Arizona. She studied watercolor painting at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden in Brooklyn, NY. She received an MS in Library and Information Science from the University of Illinois.
She was a research librarian In New York City. She retired and returned to Indiana where she concentrated on art. She found she enjoys teaching art classes. She taught watercolor painting in public libraries and for the Outreach Program of the T.C. Steele State Historic Site(SHS). In 2017, she received an Arts in the Parks grant from the Indiana Arts Commission, teaching Plein air techniques in watercolor and watercolor pencil, at both the T.C. Steele SHS and the Starve Hollow State Recreation Area.
Non-art activities include co-organizing the Chicago Group of the Sierra Club and facilitating anti-racism workshops both in New York City and Bloomington, IN. She is a lover of the woods, leading and participating in hiking and backpacking outings.
Betty is a member of the Bloomington Watercolor Society, the Watercolor Society of Indiana, Hoosier Salon, Indiana Plein Air Painters Association, the Upland Plein Air Painting Association, and Indiana Heritage Arts. She is a board member of the Friends of T.C. Steele and the coordinator of the Friends of TC Steele Member Art Show.