Our President in 1996/97 was:

Professor Neil MacCormick

He proposed the Toast to Sir Walter at our 88th Annual Dinner on Friday 1st March 1997 in The Balmoral Hotel, Edinburgh

Read the text of his address here

Sir Donald Neil MacCormick QC FBA FRSE (27 May 1941 – 5 April 2009) was a Scottish legal philosopher and politician. He was Regius Professor of Public Law and the Law of Nature and Nations at the University of Edinburgh from 1972 until 2008. He was a Member of the European Parliament 1999–2004, member of the Convention on the Future of Europe, and officer of the Scottish National Party.

Text source: Wikipedia

Here is an alternative account of his life by Archie Turnbull 

Neil was born in 1941. He went to school at Glasgow High, then to Glasgow University, where he took a first in Philosophy and English Literature, and won the Snell Exhibition, with a scholarship to Balliol, Oxford. There he took a First in his BA in Jurisprudence, which he later converted to MA. He was called to the Bar in 1971, and the following year became Regius Professor of Civil Law at Edinburgh, at the age of 31. He was Dean of the Faculty of Law from 1973-76, and is currently Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Provost of the Faculty Group of Law and Social Sciences, He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 1986, and was Vice-President, 1991-94. He is a Fellow of the British Academy, and holds Honorary Degrees from the Universities of Uppsala and Quebec.

Brought up in a political context, he has stood as prospective SNP candidate for Argyll since 1990 (and will no doubt stand again in 1996!). He lists his pastimes as hill-walking, sailing, and playing the pipes (and I can testify to his skill in the last).

I invited him to join the Edinburgh University Press Committee of the University Court, and found him to have one of the fastest-working intelligences it has ever been my privilege to meet. He is currently Chairman of Press Committee; and is also the University's representative on the Advisory Board of the Edinburgh Edition of the Waverley Novels.

Neil has been much involved with the Scottish Convention, but if he has made any enemies I don't know why.

Archie Turnbull (12/02/97)