Andrea Queeley was born and raised in Berkeley, California. She received her B.A. in Psychology and Afro-American Studies from Brown University. While working as a service provider in the field of mental health and substance abuse treatment, she began to explore African diasporic cultural practices through studying Afro-Haitian dance, training Capoeira Angola, and traveling to Cuba where she first encountered black Cubans of Anglo-Caribbean origin.
Inspired to pursue graduate education in cultural anthropology, she earned her Ph.D. from CUNY Graduate School. She served as a Post-Doctoral Teaching Fellow at Tulane University and is currently Associate Professor of Anthropology and African and African Diaspora Studies at Florida International University in Miami.