An Informal Biography


Born and raised in Germany, Yvonne Raley started her formal college education as a business major at the University of Hawaii in Hilo.  After coming to the realization that black-sand beaches and palm trees are overrated, she transferred to William Paterson University, located in the Garden State.  For one year, she again tried to be a business major, but she soon discovered that a lucrative career in business was no more appealing to her than the sun of Hawaii.  After being corrupted by a few excellent classes in philosophy, she changed her major to Liberal Studies, Humanities, and Philosophy. 


Yvonne Raley then completed a M.A. in philosophy at New York University.  A brief moment of indecision, however, brought her back to the world of business.  Having learned much about the skills of argumentation at NYU, she convinced the head of a trading floor at a bank in New York of her unique abilities as a trading assistant.  For a time thereafter, she helped one of the bank’s spot traders both gain and lose a lot of money.  After just a short while, she concluded that the main challenge of a foreign exchange trader was not to confuse the red button (“sell”) with the green one (“buy”), which she found depressingly trivial (although, as it turned out, she herself was quite capable of such confusion if under pressure).  She also very much missed being able to sleep in, so she went to the City University of New York to get her Ph.D. in philosophy.


The first college willing to give her a chance to try out her teaching abilities (you’ll have to ask her students how this is going) was Felician College (Lodi, New Jersey).  Working her way up through the ranks, she is currently an assistant professor.  Yvonne Raley has also taught as an adjunct at Bloomfield College and Hudson County Community College, but she mostly enjoys the small classes and direct student involvement that Felician College offers.  The subjects she teaches include ethics and applied ethics, critical thinking, as well as the field closest to her heart (and topic of her dissertation): metaphysics.  Apart from working on research articles in metaphysics and ethics, Yvonne Raley also writes philosophical (and not so philosophical) pieces addressed for broader audiences.


In 2008, a close friend showed Yvonne Raley how to string necklaces as a past time.  This turned into a fascination with gemstones, and within 3 years, her hobby had transformed into the jewelry company “Cecile Raley Designs.” “Cecile” is Yvonne Raley’s middle name – the name she wishes her parents had chosen as her first name, but unfortunately her opinion was not considered in this matter.  Yvonne Raley does her best to work with environmentally friendly jewelry production methods, and sells mainly untreated gemstones.  Yvonne Raley also writes about gems and jewelry on her blog: Yvonne Raley’s Blog.


Yvonne Raley lives in Jersey City, NJ with her two cats, Toby and Biffy.  Biffy is a shy but laid back little calico, Toby, the Main Coon, actively contributes to the gemstone trade by making the little bags in which they are stored disappear on a regular basis.