Giles was a primary force in beginning the women's athletic program.
She held joint appointments as associate professor in the department of physical education and as director of women's athletics. She served as the University's cheerleader sponsor from 1952 to 1973. Giles started the women's tennis program in 1952, serving as coach for eight years. She was instrumental in the development of athletic opportunities for women in Tennessee and surrounding states.
Giles is past-president of the UTM Faculty Senate and was named one of the University's top two teachers in 1981-82. Among the many honors she has received is the creation of the Bettye Giles Award, presented annually to UT Martin's outstanding female athlete.
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