Professor Geoff Palmer, Professor Emeritus in the School of Life Sciences, is to be made a freeman of Midlothian. He will join Nelson Mandela as one of a select group of people who have received this honour. A special ceremony will be held later this year.
Brewing and cereals expert Professor Palmer is also a prominent anti-racism campaigner.
The honour was proposed by Adam Montgomery, Provost of Midlothian Council, and Councillor Les Thacker. Cllr Montgomery said, "Professor Palmer has done a power of work nationally and internationally, both in his brewing career and in his anti-racism work, and remains the chair of the Penicuik Citizens Advice Bureau. We are fortunate that he chose to make his home in Penicuik in 1977 and I am delighted that we have cross-party agreement that he should be honoured in this way."
Professor Palmer said, "I'm extremely delighted by this honour, which is a honour not just for me, but for all the communities in Midlothian with whom I have worked since 1977."