Bachelor in history, University North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1986.
Yardley is a graduate of Walter Hines Page High School in Greensboro, North Carolina and received a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, class of "86. He joined the Times in 1997 and first worked as a metropolitan reporter in New York, and then became the bureau chief in Houston in 1999. His topics have included social unrest, minority uprisings, and pollution issues in China.
He was the South Asia bureau chief based in New Delhi until 2013, when he moved to Rome and became the bureau chief there.
From 1990 to 1997, Yardley was a national desk reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, based in Atlanta, Birmingham and New Orleans. He also worked for the Anniston Star and New York Times Company regional newspapers in Fairfax County, Virginia.
As well, he has written magazine articles for The New York Times Magazine, Oxford American, Essence and Redbook. Yardley is a son of Jonathan Yardley, a book critic for The Washington Post, and Rosemary Roberts.
He and his father are one of two pairs of father-son Pulitzer Prize winners.
Yardley"s brother Bill is the Seattle bureau chief for The New York Times.
Married; 3 children.