Rob Bogunovic was born in Chilliwack in 1974; he has called Chilliwack his home for the whole of his life. He has a twin brother, and two older siblings. He experienced significant language development challenges in infancy, which is common for twins, particularly among boys. The struggle to overcome these speech disorders was one of the primary challenges of Rob’s early childhood.
In high school, Rob developed a love for discussion and debate, and actively worked to improve upon his writing. He began novel writing as a hobby in grade 10, and enrolled in a journalism class in Grade 12. During this time Rob became interested in politics, especially as a result of the 1991 B.C. provincial election. 1991 was the year that a centrist B.C. Liberal Party managed to capture 33% of the vote, winning 17 seats. This far exceeded the expectations of the pundits. In subsequent years, the B.C. Liberal Party was effectively taken over by more right-wing elements who were not exactly “Liberal”. Sometimes a party ceases to be a reflection of the values their name implies.
Long before he graduated high school, Rob knew he was going to pursue a career in education. Rob paid his way through college and university by working as a stock clerk at Save-On-Foods. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree (Extended Minors in History and Geography) from the University College of the Fraser Valley, earning his way onto the Dean’s List of Distinguished Students. He went to UBC to get his Bachelor of Education, graduating Class 1 in 1998. A few years later Rob earned his Masters of Education from City University, once again earning his way onto the Dean’s List of Distinguished Students. During these years, Rob was politically socialist, and theologically atheist/agnostic. He engaged in many ideological debates, which taught him to appreciate the merits of the arguments advanced by the other side. Through most of his career Rob has taught Social Studies and Social Justice at Chilliwack Secondary School (CSS).
In 1998, something in Rob’s theology shifted, and he became an intellectual theist, believing that the evidence for God’s existence was sufficiently compelling to overcome his burden of doubt. A few years later Rob began to explore Christianity, connecting with a small fellowship near to where he grew up. He came into that fellowship with lots of questions, and is deeply thankful for the patience that was shown to him by these early Christian friends. Rob was baptized in 2000, and it was in 2000 that Rob began attending Glad Tidings Fellowship (today it bears the name CityLife Church). Rob was very active within the church, becoming a Youth Leader, an Alpha host, and setting out chairs in the gymnasium for the Sunday service. Rob became a Deacon, and was one of the church coordinators of Love Chilliwack, connecting with other churches and looking to host events to serve and connect with the larger community. Beginning in 2009, Rob dedicated his Friday nights to volunteering at Ruth and Naomi’s missions. In 2014, when CifyLife Church helped to set up and sponsor the Chilliwack branch of Cyrus Center (a mission to help at-risk youth), Rob shifted over to supporting this new ministry, serving as a neighborhood ambassador for two years. More recently Rob has sponsored a CSS Breakfast Club in the school where he works, supplying Tim Hortons’ muffins, granola bars, fruit and other snacks to youth who show up hungry. This program runs with the cooperation of the Aboriginal support team at CSS, and it is open to all students. Rob has also sponsored a number of student clubs at CSS, including CSU (Christian Students United – formerly known as Soul Tattoo), the Diversity Alliance (pro-inclusion/anti-bullying), and Games Club.