Rex developed poor mobility due to polio at the age of 5 after an incorrectly administered vaccine damaged his nerves and left him with no movement in his legs and the use of only one arm. Because of his condition, his parents did not allow him to go to school. After being taught by an aunt on the basics of reading and writing, Rex voraciously read books borrowed from his siblings and started writing at the age of 15 with his first story being published two years later.
At age 20, he finally got a chance to go to school when his family realized his unquenchable hunger to learn. He took up the Philippine Educational Placement Test (PEPT) and was accelerated all the way to the university level.
After completing his degree in Psychology in 1995, Rex went on to get his master in management (MM) degree also at Trinity four years later. In 2000, he was able to get a scholarship from AusAID which allowed him to pursue a graduate program in Human Resource Management at the University of Sydney. Following his stint in Australia, he received a scholarship from the Asian Development Bank to study Master in Development Management at the Asian Institute of Management in 2001. Rex earned his Doctor of Education degree in 2013 at Bicol University with his dissertation titled “The State of Inclusive Education in the Philippines: Policy and Legislative Implications”.
Presently, Rex is the National Disability consultant of the Basic Education Sector Transformation (BEST) Program under DFAT Australia that provides technical assistance to the Department of Education of the Philippine Government. He had conducted collaborative research on how to include the concepts of Inclusive Education in the mainstream curricula of public school system in the country.
Rex received various prestigious awards and recognitions, among them the 2008 Ten Outstanding Young Men (TOYM), 2008 Apolinario Mabini Presidential Award, 2009 Most Outstanding Alumni Award by Trinity University of Asia, 2009 Ten Outstanding Young Persons (TOYP) of the World, 2010 Bayaning Pilipino Award, 2010 United Nations MDG Warrior Awardee, 2011 Young Global Leader (YGL), World Economic Forum; 2013 Outstanding Alumni Awardee of Asian Institute of Management (AIM) and 2013 Jollibee Family Values Awardee.