Ralph Kohn was a medical scientist and innovator who was well known for his extensive philanthropic activities. After spending time in academia and the pharmaceutical industry, in 1970 Ralph set up a pioneering company to conduct drug-related research and clinical development. He subsequently established the Kohn Foundation, which offers generous support to the sciences and medicine, as well as education and the arts.
His medical research company, Advisory Service (Clinical and General), received the Queen’s Award for Industry in 1990 for its successful assessment of treatments for osteoporosis, amongst other conditions. Through the Kohn Foundation, Ralph supported many scientific initiatives and institutions, including prizes that recognise the achievements of younger scientists.
At the Royal Society, Ralph’s significant patronage helped to establish the Kohn Centre, the Science in Society programme and Kohn Award for science broadcasting. He became an Honorary Fellow of the Society in 2006 and was a fellow of numerous other learned societies. Ralph was knighted in 2010 for services to science, music and charity.
Sir Ralph Kohn FRS died on 11 November 2016.
Professor of Ultrasonics and Underwater Acoustics, Institute of Sound and Vibration Research, University of Southampton
Chairman, Health Effects of Ultrasound in Air (HEFUA), University of Southampton
Chairman, Network for Anti-Microbial Resistance and Infection Prevention (NAMRIP), University of Southampton
Scientific Expert Group Member, International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP)