Inside Salk; Salk Institute

Rita Coblentz Bronowski

Rita Bronowski

Rita Coblentz Bronowski and Jacob Bronowski

Rita Coblentz Bronowski, 92, widow of Salk Founding Fellow Jacob Bronowski, died September 2 at the Pacific Palisades, CA home of her daughter, Judith Bronowski.

The British-born sculptor was best known locally as a San Diego arts patron who was a founding member of the revived La Jolla Playhouse and a leader of the San Diego English- Speaking Union.

At the Salk she is also remembered as the supportive spouse of the scientist-philosopher-poet who moved to La Jolla in 1964 to be part of the fledgling Institute. And in the decades after his death in 1974, she also worked to keep Bronowski's legacy alive.

Jacob Bronowski may be best known for creating the groundbreaking public television series "Ascent of Man." But Bronowski, both a mathematician and humanist, was part of Jonas Salk's first select group of internationally renowned researcher-scholars from a wide variety of disciplines who formed the core of the Institute in its earliest days.

The couple had four children: Lisa Jardine, a noted British historian; Judith Bronowski, a filmmaker; Nicole Bronowski Plett, an arts writer, critic and editor; and Clare Bronowski, a Los Angeles attorney.