Tuscaloosa, AL – A familiar presence in west Alabama politics is making a change. State Senator Charles Steele has resigned from the Alabama Senate. He says he wants to devote himself full time to his new position of vice president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Steele was serving his third term in the state senate and says he decided to resign now so a special election can be held before the next legislative session. His District 24 seat includes much of west Alabama's Black Belt region. Steele's new duties with the civil rights organization include fund raising and enhancing economic opportunities in underdeveloped areas.