Taylor was born in 1887 in Brooklyn, New York and graduated from Pratt Institute High School in Brooklyn. He graduated with a civil engineering degree from Cornell University in 1910. While at Cornell, he played freshman lacrosse in 1907 and was a varsity lacrosse letterman in 1908, 1909 and 1910. Cornell tied for the lacrosse championship in 1910. Lacrosse was a minor sport then at Cornell but Roy was awarded a varsity letter at the end of his senior year for his outstanding play and leadership. Taylor also played freshman basketball, and was captain of the civil engineering team.
After leaving Cornell, Taylor played for the Crescent Athletic Club from 1910 through 1925 and was captain in 1920-21 during which time the Crescents won the mythical championships - in games played against Illinois A.C. in Chicago before 20,000 fans. Taylor played both midfield and close attack. Taylor's lacrosse life was interrupted during the first World War when he went to France and served as Chief of Tounage Sec., G.I. General Staff, Tours, France and reached the rank of Major of Engineers in the U.S. Army before discharge. During his Army career he was awarded the Legion of Honor Medal, the most coveted France decoration. Taylor helped coach and start the sport at the Montclair A.C. and at West Point and was fundamental in helping to start lacrosse at Yale University.
Taylor started officiating lacrosse when Father Bill Schmeisser appointed officials, and officiated for many years. He was named chief referee in 1925, a position he held for 20 years. Roy spoke on lacrosse at the Wingate Memorial lectures given to the PSAL coaches in New York in 1928-29-30. These lectures were later published under the title "Talks by Great Coaches," which included all sports.
He was secretary, treasurer, vice-president and the president of the USILA and later chairman of the rules committee for many years. He served on the USILA's executive board for 30 years, served on the American Olympic Committee in 1932 and was a leader in developing the USILA into the body it is today.
Besides outstanding achievement in lacrosse, he had a most interesting and successful business life. Starting with Ontario Power Co., he advanced to assistant hydraulic engineer before leaving in 1915 to join the Munson Steamship line. His work at Munson was interrupted by the war, but upon his return from France, Taylor became assistant to the president of Munson Lines, vice-president of the Munson Building Corp., and vice-president of the Bahamas Hotel Corp., a position he held until the Munson Line was liquidated in 1940. Roy then joined the Gulf Oil Corp., and remained there until retiring in 1953. Roy Taylor passed away in 1963.