Rob Bell grew up in a Navy family. He attended the University of Virginia on scholarship and graduated with honors from both the college and U.Va law school. Prior to running for office, Rob served as a state prosecutor in Orange County for five years.
Since his election as a Republican to the Virginia General Assembly, Rob has written laws that crack down on repeat-offense drunk driving and keep sex offenders off school property. He has also passed laws to expand Virginia’s protective orders and to require life in prison for those convicted of raping children. In 2015 he authored the law to address sexual assaults on college campuses, and in 2016 Bell led the effort to expand Virginia’s stalking laws and empower crime victims.
In recent years, Rob has also worked to improve mental health care in Virginia. In 2014, he patroned Virginia’s “bed of last resort” law to ensure that a bed at a state hospital is always available when a court has ordered treatment. In 2019, he wrote a new law to establish minimum standards for mental health care in Virginia jails and to coordinate jail-provided mental health services with community services after inmate release.
In recognition of his work, Rob has received awards from numerous groups, including Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD-Virginia), the Virginia Chamber of Commerce, and the Psychiatric Society of Virginia. The Action Alliance, which works to address domestic violence and sexual assault, gave Rob the 2009 “Act, Honor, Hope” Award, and in 2011 recognized Rob along with 29 other Virginians as a “30 Voices for 30 Years” Honoree.
An Eagle Scout, Rob was an active volunteer with the Boy Scouts and with the public schools prior to his first election. Rob and his wife Jessica have two children, Robbie and Evie. The Bells live in Albemarle County.