Bernhard Ott was born in Switzerland where he lives now with his wife Margrit. They are the parents of four adult children. The Otts are members of the Evangelische Taufergemeinde Basel.
Ott's theological training is from the Theological Seminary Bienenberg, Switzerland (Diploma, 1977), Mennonite Brethren Biblical Seminary in Fresno, California (Master of Divinity, 1984), and the Oxford Centre for Mission Studies in Oxford, England (Ph.D., 1999).
Ott has taught at the Theological Seminary Bienenberg since 1980. He had been the Director of Studies there since 1984. He has also taught extensively in Switzerland, Germany, and Paraguay.