Chambers: Room 330
Phone: (317) 229-3981
Judicial Assistant: TL Brown
Phone: (317) firstname.lastname@example.org
Courtroom Deputy: Tanesa Genier
Phone: (317) email@example.com
The Honorable Tanya Walton Pratt became Chief Judge on March 20, 2021. She is the first person of color to serve as the Southern District of Indiana's chief judge, and the tenth chief judge in the court's history. Chief Judge Pratt was appointed as a district judge on June 15, 2010, becoming the first African-American federal judge in Indiana history. She filled the vacancy created by the elevation of Judge David F. Hamilton to the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.
From 2008 until her appointment to the bench of the District Court, Chief Judge Pratt served as a judge in the Marion Superior Court, Probate Division. She was elected Marion Superior Court Judge in November 1996, and she served as Presiding Judge of the Superior Court, Criminal Division, from 1997 to 2008. She also served as Master Commissioner for the Marion Superior Court from 1993 to 1996. Prior to her election as a Marion Superior Court Judge, she was active in private practice as a partner with the law firm of Walton & Pratt, focusing primarily on family law, bankruptcy, and probate law. She also served as a contract county public defender during her years of private practice.
Chief Judge Pratt is active in the Indianapolis and Marion County Bar Associations; she has served as past Vice President of the Indianapolis Bar Association and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Marion County Bar Association. She is an active member of the Indiana State Bar Association. Chief Judge Pratt has served on the American Inn of Court, Indianapolis (Master) and the Judicial Conference of the United States Committee on Codes of Conduct. She presently serves on the Federal Judges Association Board of Directors, and the Seventh Circuit’s Pattern Civil Jury Instructions Committee.
Chief Judge Pratt received the Rabb Emison Award from the Indiana State Bar Association in 2015, the Antoinette Dakin Leach Award from the Indianapolis Bar Association in 2017, the Howard University's Distinguished Alumna Award in 2020, an Honorary Doctor of Law degree from Ball State University in 2011, and an Honorary Doctor of Law degree from Franklin College in 2017.
In 1981, Chief Judge Pratt received her B.A. from Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, and in 1984, she received her J.D. from Howard University School of Law in Washington, D.C.
Courtroom Procedures & Trial Practice Before the Honorable Tanya Walton Pratt
Counsel has sought guidance on the Court’s procedures for issuing protective orders and seeking to file documents under seal. On January 15, 2015, a Uniform Protective Order was approved by the Court.
Uniform Protective Order (Approved by the Court 1/15/2015)