ROBERTO M. J. LARA graduated from the University of the Philippines with a degree of Bachelor of Arts in Social Science (1982) and Bachelor of Laws (1987). He was admitted to the Bar in 1988. He obtained his Masters of Law (Commercial Law) degree at the London School of Economics and Political Science (1999).
Atty. Lara has worked in various government agencies, including as Senior Technical Assistant to then Senator Rene A.V. Saguisag, and as Chief of Staff of former BIR Commissioner Liwayway Vinzons-Chato. After leaving government service in 1998, he engaged in private law practice until his appointment as University Secretary in February 2017.