Charlene Taylor began playing basketball in grade school after being encouraged by her third grade teacher to enter a foul-shooting contest. Taking her teacher’s advice, Charlene entered the contest and won first place. This early experience was the start of her love of basketball. Charlene played point guard at Beaver Falls High School, where she averaged 15 points per game. In her senior year (1985), Taylor helped her team to a 25-1 record, and both the conference and state championship titles. Charlene was named the conference MVP, a member of the “Terrific Twenty” (top twenty girl basketball players in Pennsylvania), received the high school’s “Carolyn Clark Girls’ Sports Award” and earned a scholarship to the University of New Haven.
Taylor had an astounding athletic career at the University of New Haven from 1985- 1989. During that time, New Haven won four NECC titles, two Division II New England Regional Championships, and a National Championship en route to a 102-22 record. During her career, Charlene scored 1,853 points with an average of 17 points per game, and tallied 603 assists, 419 steals, and 458 rebounds. She was named UNH Female Athlete of the Year twice, Kodak All-District twice, and in 1987, she was named to the Division II All- Tournament Team. Charlene was a three-time All-NECC First Team selection, and a 1989 NCAA New England All Region Squad selection. In 1989, she was a Kodak All-American, ECAC Player of the Year, and NECC Player of the Year.
Charlene’s name appears at or near the top of several categories in the Charger’s record book: #1 career assists (603), #1 career steals (419), #2 career points (1,853), #2 most steals in a season (134), #3 most points in a season (557), #9 most 3-pointers in a season (35), and #2 most assists in a season (175). In 1996, Taylor was inducted into the University of New Haven Sports Hall of Fame. In 2003 Charlene was inducted into the Connecticut Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame and in 2016 she was honored by the University of New Haven as one of the 30 female athletes to impact the New Haven Athletics.
Upon graduating from the University of New Haven, Charlene worked as an assistant coach for The University of New Haven from 1990 to 1992. She also worked as an assistant basketball coach for Post College in 1993 and The University of Quinnipiac from 1994 to 1996. Charlene retired in 2017 as a Connecticut State Trooper after 23 years of service. During her career as a State Trooper she received several accommodations, three Unit Citations and two Meritorial service awards. In 2014, she was the Connecticut Female Trooper of the Year.
Charlene is currently employed by the City of New Haven as a Vendor Enforcement. Charlene is also an associate minister at New Light Holy Church where she serves as the Sunday School Superintendent, Leader of Youth Department and chairs the church’s food pantry.