Dr. Betty Clements

Elizabeth Anne Coon, Kelsey M. Smith, Christopher J. Boes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Women currently make up 45.9% of neurology residents and fellows, although little is known about the individual women who broke gender barriers to train as neurologists. Grace Elizabeth Betty Clements (1918-1965) was the first woman trainee at the Mayo Clinic to practice neurology and later became a founder of the Barrow Neurological Institute. Before paving the way for future women trainees in neurology, she served as a Women Airforce Service Pilot including flying atomic bomb planning missions during World War II. Following the war, her path to medicine included volunteering in the American Red Cross in the Philippines where she treated patients with Hansen disease (leprosy). Clements returned to her home state to complete medical school at the University of Nebraska before seeking neurologic training at the Mayo Clinic in 1954. Following additional training at Queen Square, she became a founder of the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, Arizona. Many early women in neurology have remarkable backgrounds that have equipped them for their career in medicine which Clements exemplifies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)841-846
Number of pages6
Issue number20
StatePublished - May 17 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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