Tanya debuted on "The Cosby Show" in 1986. After that, she appeared in shows like "Beverly Hills, 90210" (with Jon Gries), "Moesha", "Family Matters", and "The District" (with Richard Burgi and Michelle Forbes). After this, she was offered the role of Patty on 24. When the season ended, she had a brief recurring role as Officer Maya Anderson on "NYPD Blue" (with Esai Morales and Joe Nieves). After this, she was offered one of the leads on the show "The Handler" (with Brent Briscoe), but the show was canceled after one season.
More recently, she has appeared on shows like "Strong Medicine", "Windfall" (with Lana Parrilla), "ER" (with Leland Orser and Lucinda Jenney), "Standoff" (with Gina Torres, Michael Cudlitz, and Susan Gibney), and a brief recurring role on "True Blood" (with Michelle Forbes, John Billingsley, and Dean Norris).
Although most of her work has been on television, Tanya has also appeared on films like The Brothers, Mutiny (with Michael Cavanaugh), and Ralph & Stanley.