Judge Tanya Walton Pratt of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana this week was recognized as a distinguished graduate of her alma mater, Howard University, the district court announced Monday.
Pratt was awarded the 2020 Distinguished Postgraduate Achievement Award in the fields of law and public service from the university in Washington D.C., where she completed her J.D. in 1984. Established in 1943, the alumni award for distinguished postgraduate achievement honors alumni who have made valuable contributions in their respective fields.
“This year’s distinguished alumni illustrate the vast influence Howard University graduates have on our society,” Howard University president Wayne A.I. Frederick said of Pratt and her fellow award recipients. “Their contributions to their industries, communities and the nation demonstrate the value of a Howard University education and how the core values of excellence, truth, and service can make an impact on our world.”
The Southern District Court judge was nominated by President Barack Obama and sworn in as a judge of the Southern District of Indiana in June 2010, becoming the first African American to serve as a federal judge in the Hoosier state.
Before serving on the federal bench, Pratt was an elected judge of the Marion Superior Court from 1996 until June 2010.