Mark Bouman was born in 1960 in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and he lived with his parents and two siblings outside of town until he was sixteen. When his parents divorced, he moved back to town. At age eighteen, he began attending Michigan State. At age twenty, he quit college and joined the Air Force. While stationed in Montana, he committed his life to God, and it was at church that he met his wife, Joan. After serving in the Air Force for almost ten years, Mark went back to college at Northern Michigan University and earned a degree in electronics. Soon after, he began working for BEST Power Technology in Wisconsin.
In 1992, Mark and Joan sensed a call to serve as missionaries in Cambodia. They originally went for one year, then returned to the States, where Mark began the process of getting licensed as an Assemblies of God minister. In 1996, the Bouman family—Mark, Joan, Andrew, and Nicholas—moved to Cambodia permanently. In 1997, they took over an orphanage in southwest Cambodia, and in 2000 completed renovations and an expansion to the School of Hope K-12 Cambodian Christian School. The School of Hope is one of the most successful and inspirational examples of how the lives of orphans can be transformed.
In the next decade of his life, Mark views his missions work as primarily involving writing, travel, and speaking about what God is doing in the world. His first book, a memoir, The Tank Man's Son, was released by Tyndale House Publishers in June 2015.
The Bouman family currently live in Anchorage, Alaska.