Elsa-Brita Titchenell (née Bergqvist) was born in Uppsala, Sweden in 1915. She attendÂed French schools in Stockholm and in the then international city of Shanghai, China, before completing her formal education in England. In 1937 she joined the staff of the Royal Swedish Legation and Consulate General in Shanghai where, during World War II and the Japanese occupation, she worked to ameliorate conditions of allied internees.
In 1948 she immigrated into the United States to serve at the International Headquarters of the Theosophical Society, now located in Pasadena. For eight years she was also on the administrative staff of California Institute of Technology, retiring from its Department of Astro-physics in 1980. Elsa-Brita Titchenell was Associate Editor of Sunrise magazine from 1989 until her death in 2002.