LONDON (AP) — Len Goodman, the suave veteran judge of «Dancing with the Stars» and «Strictly Come Dancing,» has died, his agent said Monday. He was 78 years old.

Deputy Jackie Gill said Goodman «passed away peacefully,» without giving a cause.

Goodman, a former British champion and dancer, was a judge on «Strictly Come Dancing» for 12 years since its launch on the BBC in 2004. The ballroom dance competition, which pairs celebrities with professional dance partners, has become one of the the most popular of the chain. shows

Goodman was a main judge on the US version of the show, «Dancing With the Stars,» for 15 years until his retirement in November.

BBC director-general Tim Davie said Goodman was “a wonderful, warm-hearted artist who was adored by millions. He appealed to all ages and felt like a member of everyone’s family. Len was at the very heart of the success of ‘Strictly’. He will be greatly missed by the public and by his many friends and family.”

Goodman also received the Carl Alan Award in recognition of his outstanding contributions to dance and was the owner of the Goodman Academy dance school in the south of England.