Yoav Messer was born in Israel (8th generation), and was raised in Ramat HaSharon and Tel Aviv. He graduated from Tel Aviv's Tichon Hadash high school. Messer served in the IDF's special forces, and after 30 years of reserve service was honorably discharged at the rank of lieutenant colonel.
He studied architectural and city planning at the Technion Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa of which he graduated from with honors. He has taught arts at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem as well as at The College of Management Academic Studies (HaMichlala LeMinhal) in Tel Aviv. The city of Tel Aviv remains at the center of Yoav's professional and personal life, where he lives with his wife and three children.
As an ongoing search for different cultures and landscapes he has embarked on an extensive travel program in the past few years that included climbing to the peak of Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, Kaçkar in Turkey, the Mont Blanc in Europe, biking in Burma and Ethiopia, traveling in Haiti and south east Asia.