Carolyn Hill, a certified social worker, said she will run for the District 8 seat on the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education.

The post is now held by Linda Johnson, of Plaquemine, who is not seeking re-election.

“Representing the citizens of BESE District 8 is a natural extension of my children’s advocacy work,” Hill said in a prepared statement.

“We need strong voices on BESE to champion the needs of children, provide better educational opportunities to the community and promote the core values of our district,” she said.

“The future of Louisiana depends on our ability to prepare the youth for a prosperous and bright future,” Hill said.

BESE sets policies for an estimated 668,000 public school students statewide.

The panel includes 11 members, with eight picked by voters and three named by the governor.

Hill is a certified social worker who focuses on mental health issues of the disabled and senior citizens.

She obtained a bachelor’s degree in social work from Southern University and a master’s degree in social work at LSU.

Hill’s other work experience includes time as a crisis counselor for at risk children after hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005.

She worked as a crisis manager for Catholic Charities after Hurricane Gustav in 2008.

The primary election is Oct. 22.

District 8 includes all or parts of East Baton Rouge, West Baton Rouge, Iberville, Pointe Coupee, West Feliciana, East Feliciana, St. Helena, Tangipahoa, Ascension, St. Martin, St. Landry, Lafayette, Evangeline and Avoyelles parishes.