For 35 years Donald Ashe led the Registry of Deeds.
His family says that Ashe died Tuesday at the age of 83 after a short illness.
Ashe was running for another term in office.
He was being challenged for the post by former State Representative Cheryl Coakley Rivera.
Ashe, known for his dapper attire and how open he was all who approached him, he is also credited with bringing the Registry of Deeds into the computer age, making it user friendly.
Rivera, who is a democrat who challenged Ashe for the nomination offered her condolences to the family while suspending her campaign for two weeks.
Meantime, the family is expected to announce arrangements soon.