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IndyBar: Hon. Tanya Walton Pratt Named Recipient of 2013 Antoinette Dakin Leach Award

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The Hon. Tanya Walton Pratt, United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, will be recognized as the 2013 Antoinette Dakin Leach Award recipient at the Antoinette Dakin Leach Award Celebration Luncheon on October 25. The luncheon is being held in conjunction with the Women & the Law Division’s Women, Law & Leadership Symposium, which will be held Thursday, October 24 through Friday, October 25.

The award, named after one of the first women admitted to the Indiana bar, is fitting for Judge Pratt, who has already achieved a number of “firsts” thus far in her career: She is both the first African American to be appointed to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana and the first African-American federal judge in the State of Indiana.

From 2008 until her appointment to the bench of the District Court in 2010, Judge Pratt served as a judge in the Marion Superior Court, Probate Division. She was elected Marion County 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 County 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.

The Indianapolis Bar’s Women and the Law Division established the Antoinette Dakin Leach award in 1990 to honor outstanding women in the legal profession. The award is presented only when the division deems a worthy candidate exists.

To register for the luncheon and/or other events held during the Women, Law & Leadership Symposium, visit indybar.org.•

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  3. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

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