Daniel was born in Charleston, South Carolina. She played her collegiate golf at Furman University, and was on the 1976 national championship team that included future LPGA players Betsy King, Sherri Turner and Cindy Ferro. Daniel won the US Women’s Amateur in 1975 and 1977, the Women’s Western Amateur in 1978, and was on the US Curtis Cup teams in 1976 and 1978 (going 4-0 in 1976). She turned pro at the end of 1978 and joined the LPGA Tour in 1979.
Daniel’s first victory came in 1979 year at the Patty Berg Classic, and she went on to win the LPGA Rookie of the Year award. Over the next five years, when Nancy Lopez was at her most dominant, Daniel still managed to win 13 tournaments, including four in 1980 when she was named LPGA Tour Player of the Year. Daniel led the Tour in wins in 1982, 1990 and 1994. She also led in scoring three times, including in 1989 when she became the second golfer in Tour history to record a scoring average below 71.00.
The year 1990 was her most successful on tour. She won seven times, including her lone major at the Mazda LPGA Championship. That year she was also named the Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year. Along the way, Daniel endured two major slumps. She was winless from 1986 to 1988 and again from 1996 to 2002. When she finally won again in 2003, she became – at age 46 years, 8 months and 29 days – the oldest winner in Tour history. She had outlasted most of her contemporaries such as King, Patty Sheehan and Amy Alcott, remaining competitive on the LPGA Tour.
She won the Golf Writers Association of America Female Player of the Year in 1980 and 1990. She also won the 1981 Seagrams Seven Crowns of Sport Award for women’s golf. She was inducted into the South Carolina Golf Hall of Fame in September 1995. She was recognized during the LPGA’s 50th Anniversary in 2000 as one of the LPGA’s top-50 players and teachers.
Daniel played on eight U.S. Solheim Cup teams (1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2005).
By 2005 she had cut back her schedule, and played just five events by 2007. That year she also served as assistant captain on the U.S. Solheim Cup team, and was named captain for the American squad in 2009. In 2007, she joined the Golf Channel as a substitute analyst for LPGA Tournament coverage. Her first event was the 2007 Safeway Classic.
Daniel also awards the best junior female golfer in South Carolina with the “Beth Daniel Award.” The award is given to the player with the most SCJGA (South Carolina Junior Golf Association) points in a year.
In 2009, Daniel was the captain of the US Solheim Cup team that defeated Europe by a score of 16-12 at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Illinois.