William and Mary Law School

Military Law Career Guide

By Paul Hellyer
Updated August 2014

Recruits

Books

Frederic L. Borch, Judge Advocates in Combat: Army Lawyers in Military Operations from Vietnam to Haiti (2001).
Describes the work army lawyers have done during combat and peacekeeping and humanitarian missions from 1959 to 1996. Coverage includes the Vietnam War, the invasions of Grenada and Panama, the first Gulf War, and the 1990s humanitarian mission to Haiti.
KF7307 .B67 2001 (Stacks)

Vivian H. Gembara, Drowning in the Desert (2008).
William & Mary Law School alum and JAG officer Vivian Gembara writes about her tour of duty in Iraq.
KF373 .G46 A3 2008 (Stacks) 

Richard L. Hermann, Landing a Federal Legal Job: Finding Success in the U.S. Government Job Market (2011).
Includes a chapter on landing a job in the Judge Advocate General's Corps.
KF299 .G6 H473 2011 (OCS)

Gary A. Munneke, Careers in Law (3rd ed. 2004).
Includes a section on careers in military law.
KF297 .M86 2004 (OCS)


Journal Articles

Peter Bacque, Virginia Lawyers Volunteer to Help Military Veterans, Richmond Times Dispatch, Dec. 28, 2011.
Describes pro bono efforts by Virginia lawyers to help military veterans with benefits claims and other legal issues.

William Browning, JAG's Job Not Drama-Filled as Hollywood Portrays It, Florida Times-Union, March 25, 2013, at A1.
This profile of a Navy JAG describes the work that JAGs typically do.

Rick Brundrett, Weighing Their Options: More Young Lawyers Considering Legal Careers in the Military, South Carolina Lawyers Weekly, July 13, 2009.
Discusses the increasing number of lawyers who are seeking careers in the JAG corps.

Scott A. DiRocco, Holding the Line: Understanding the Role of Independent Legal Counsel in Command Decision-Making, Army Lawyer, Dec. 2010, at 3.
A detailed look at the work that military lawyers do.

Robert B. Goss, Veteran Disability Claims: Lawyers' Call to Action, Houston Lawyer, Sept./Oct. 2008, at 16.
Explains the work that lawyers do when representing veterans in the VA benefits claims system.

Christopher Kratzer, Course Tests JAGs' Mettle, Montgomery Advertiser, June 3, 2011.
About a challenging training course for Air Force JAGs that includes time in the classroom and in the field.

Michelle Lore, Minnesota Army National Guard JAG Officers Back from Iraq Settle Back Into Practice, Minnesota Lawyer, March 15, 2010.
Focuses on the transition from military life back into civilian law practice.

Caitlin McNamara, International Law in a Surprising Place, Young Lawyer, Dec. 2012, at 15.
Explains how the JAG corps can offer lawyers experience in practicing international law.

Charles N. Pede, Military Justice, the Judge Advocate and the 21st Century, Army Lawyer, April 2011, at 32.
Discusses changing demands and expectations for the JAG corps and describes how JAGs can improve their skills through training. 

Rebecca C. Patrick and Douglas J. Rosinski, Serving Those Who Served: Representing Veterans in the VA Benefits System, South Carolina Lawyer, July 2008, at 33.
Explains the process for adjudicating a veterans benefits claim and the lawyer's role.

Barbara Rabinovitz, Judge Advocate General Corps Is Nation's Oldest Law Firm, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, Aug. 6, 2007.
Provides an in-depth look at the training and responsibilities that JAGs undertake.

Stephen A. Stokes, Advocates in Action: Administrative Duties for JAGs in Iraq, Advocate (Idaho), March-April 2011, at 45.
A JAG officer describes his work on transactional matters, as well as his colleagues' work in military justice.

Kristi Tousignant, Lawyers Take Pride in Representing Members of the Armed Services, Daily Record (Baltimore), May 23, 2013.
This news article is about civilian lawyers who practice military law.

Brian K. Walker, Serving Those Who Served: Representing Veterans at the VA, 73 Texas Bar Journal 832 (2010).
Explains the attorney's role in VA benefits claims.

Michael Odell Walker, Warrior Lawyers: Serving the Country as a Judge Advocate, Young Lawyer, May 2011, at 2.
This article provides a good introduction to careers in the JAG corps.

Wayne Woolley, Filing Briefs and Serving in the Battlefield, New Jersey Law Journal, June 7, 2010, at 14.
Profile of a JAG attorney in the New Jersey National Guard who served a tour of duty in Afghanistan.


Periodical

The Army Lawyer
Library has 1972-present.
Monthly.
Charlottesville, VA: Judge Advocate General's Legal Center & School
SHELVED IN PERIODICALS
On the Web at: http://www.loc.gov/rr/frd/Military_Law/Army_Lawyer.html 


Organizations & Websites

JAG Corps
Air Force JAG Corps website: http://www.afjag.af.mil/ 
Army JAG Corps website: http://www.goarmy.com/jag.html 
Navy JAG Corps website: http://www.jag.navy.mil/ 
These websites offer testimonials by JAGs, information on summer internship opportunities, application forms and more.

Lewis B. Puller, Jr. Veterans Benefits Clinic
William & Mary Law School
P.O. Box 8795
Williamsburg, Virginia 23187-8795
tel: 757-221-7443
e-mail: veterans@wm.edu
wesbite: http://law.wm.edu/academics/programs/jd/electives/clinics/veterans/ 
The Clinic assists current and former service members with veterans disability benefits claims. Students receive course credit for their work with the Clinic. For an article describing the Clinic's work, see Colleges and Universities Join Forces to Help Veterans.

Military Lawyers Conference (ABA)
740 15th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20005-1022
tel: 202-662-1020
fax: 202-662-1751
email: gpsld@americanbar.org
website: http://www.americanbar.org/groups/government_public/resources/military_lawyers_conference.html 
The Military Lawyers Conference is part of the ABA's Government and Public Sector Lawyers Division. Its mission is to provide benefits and services to military lawyers.

Photo:  Associated Press