J. Ezra Merkin, the hedge fund manager whose investors suffered billions of losses tied to Bernard Madoff, resigned Friday as the chairman of GMAC LLC.

GMAC, which was bailed out by the government last month, said it has been forced to retool its board and will complete the changes by March 24.

Lenard Tessler, a managing director at Cerberus Capital Management LP, GMAC's majority owner, will succeed Mr. Merkin on an interim basis.

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