Dr. Cheryll S. Gerelle was born in Salisbury, N.C. and reared in Spartanburg County, South Carolina, where she did her elementary and high school studies. Her maternal grandmother lived with the family and, along with her parents, provided a strong role model. She already knew at the age of four years old that she was expected to attend university one day and to attain good grades.
Growing up was idyllic in the countryside and allowed her to pursue a number of extracurricular activities, including 4-H, Girl Scouts and pianist at her local church. She graduated as class valedictorian from her high school, before entering North Carolina A&T State University, Greensboro, N.C. in 1964 to pursue a degree in Engineering Mathematics, graduating in 1968.
Gerelle accepted a job in industry working as an Engineering Assistant for Exxon Research and Engineering in Florham Park, New Jersey, before continuing her graduate studies. She entered Kansas State University in 1970 and received a Master's degree in Mathematics in 1972. Having married fellow graduate student, Eric Gerelle, of British and French nationalities, she continued her studies by entering a Ph.D. program, graduating in 1975 with a degree in Math & Adult Education. The goal was to apply mathematics to learning and behavior in adults. Her dissertation was titled: A Markov Process for Predicting Adult Student Behavior.
She and her husband accompanied their thesis advisor, Richard Greechie, on sabbatical to the University of Geneva in 1973. They found this a stimulating and exciting place to live. It was no surprise that they jumped at the chance to return. They moved back to Geneva, Switzerland in 1975 where they continue to live.
Gerelle worked in the European Headquarters of Digital Equipment Corporation for 15 years, before starting her own software development company. The company now focuses on Sustainable Development projects around the globe. While at Digital, she held a number of analytical and product related jobs, including business forecasting, business modeling and business development.
Today, Dr. Gerelle is in the process of introducing some new technologies in the United States. Road construction and alternative energy products are among these. She hopes that by doing this, she can create new jobs and provide someone else with the opportunity she was granted so many years ago.
Dr. Gerelle and her husband are the proud parents of one daughter, Gabrielle, who recently graduated from medical school and works for the University Hospital in Lausanne, Switzerland.
[Alton Wallace, Cheryll Gerelle]