After doing undergraduate internships in ministry and historic preservation, Tanner decided to attend law school at the University of the District of Columbia because he wanted the skills and license to be useful to people going through urgent life crises. As part of his legal education, Tanner volunteered at an emergency clinic for Afghan evacuees, interned with DC’s Office of the Tenant Advocate, did eviction defense as a student attorney for Rising For Justice, interned in the Housing unit at Neighborhood Legal Services Program, and was a student attorney in UDC’s Immigration and Human Rights Clinic working at the crim-imm intersection in detained work.