Interesting, recent article here: www.lawschool.cornell.edu/faculty-pages/wendel/teaching.htm The author confirms my own impressions; -the MOST important single thing is a J.D. from one of the chosen few schools and doing well there; -Publish, publish, publish; -federal judicial clerkship is good; -LL.M. and J.S.D. degrees won't make up for a (his word) "crummy" J.D. and, if I interpret him correctly, are largely irrelevant except insofar as they give the student the opportunity to write and PUBLISH; and -a Ph.D. in a law related subject is becoming more important but, again, the J.D. must be stellar. Yuck. Who needs it? He ALSO talks about clinical and legal research and writing positions. THESE stand everything on its head!