Rolandas Paksas was born on 10 June 1956 in Telsiai. He is the only child of Feliksas and Elena Paksai, who still live in Telsiai. He graduated from Zemaites secondary school in 1974, and attended Vilnius Civil Engineering Institute, receiving the degree of Industrial and Civil Construction engineering in 1979. He graduated from the Leningrad Civil Aviation Academy in 1984 as a pilot. He became a member of the former Soviet acrobatic flying team and a flying team in Lithuania, and he has won numerous international flying competitions. He also worked as an aviation instructor, and became director of the S. Darius and S. Girenas aviation clubs in Vilnius. He is a member of the Acrobatic Flying Federation of Lithuania. In addition to being an aerobatics champion, he is a motorcycle enthusiast. He also served as president of Restako, a construction company, from 1992–97.
Paksas was president of the Vilnius Club from 1999–2002, when he was made honorary president. He is married to Laima Paksiene, an economist. They have two children, Inga and Mindaugas.