Herb was the third child of Frank and Nellie Taylor, born in Pickford, Michigan in 1893. The family were devout Christians and Herb was no exception. He would go on to found the Christian Workers Foundation to develop youth organizations.After graduating with a BS degree from Northwestern University, Herb worked for the YMCA in France. In 1917, he also joined the Naval Reserve as the USA entered the Great War.
Herb married Gloria Forbich in 1919 and moved to Oklahoma. It was there that he helped found the Rotary Club of Wynnewood. He moved to Chicago in the late '20s and joined Club #1 to which he served by holding almost every office of the Club including the Presidency.Herb gave the right to use his famous Four Way Test to Rotary International in 1942 and also gave the movement the copyright in 1954 - the year when he himself served as RI President. (1954-55) He retained the rights to use the test for himself, his Club Aluminum Company and the Christian Workers Foundation.