About Tonya Pfaff
As a native and enduring resident of Terre Haute, Tonya Pfaff is committed to the ideals of family, education and service as the foundation of a strong community.
She is the only daughter of Nancy and Fred Nation. With three brothers, she grew up in a highly competitive family, whether it be in academics, sports or community service. Tonya's elementary education was at St. Ann School, where one of her teachers was her mother, Nancy, who inspired her to become a teacher.
At an early age, she became a competitive softball player, including traveling nationally with her Miss Softball America team. Tonya also became the first girl to play on a traditionally boys soccer team in Terre Haute. Then, at Chauncey Rose Junior High, she started her basketball career which blossomed at Terre Haute North Vigo High School where she became the county scoring leader, while also earning eight varsity letters in three sports. She was then recruited to play basketball at West Point Military Academy and after 18 months away, transferred to Saint Mary-of the-Woods College (SMWC) where she played for the Pomeroys.
Tonya is a graduate of SMWC with a bachelor's degree in mathematics and secondary education, and subsequently earned a master's degree in educational administration, curriculum and supervision from the University of Oklahoma. After college, she spent a year teaching English in Tajimi, Japan, Terre Haute's sister city. Upon returning to Terre Haute, she taught math and coached for three years at Terre Haute South Vigo.
Tonya married Chris Pfaff, an Indiana University graduate and US Army officer, in 1994, and they were soon reassigned to an active duty position in Germany. During his military career, Chris has served in South Korea, Oklahoma, Germany, Afghanistan and Kuwait, and was recently promoted to the rank of Colonel. He is currently the Director of Strategic Initiatives for the Indiana National Guard, headquartered in Indianapolis.
Tonya and Chris have four children: Griffin, a senior engineering major and Air Force ROTC cadet at Purdue University; Anne, a sophomore at Indiana University; Greta, a freshman at Ball State University; and Kate, a freshman at Terre Haute North Vigo. While raising this active family in Terre Haute for the past 20 years, Tonya has continued her career, teaching math for 15 years at West Vigo High School and for the last seven years, at Terre Haute North Vigo.
Tonya sought her first elective office with the goal of helping to address public education challenges in Indiana, and is committed to bringing greater economic development to Terre Haute and West Terre Haute.