The Story of MDK

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Story of MDK Uncommon Paths to Success Our Power is in Our People

Multiple Services, One MDK Technology That Sets Us Apart The Next Chapter


Contents 01 Uncommon Paths to Success

02 Our Journey

03 The Early Days

04 Technology That Sets Us Apart

05 Organic Growth

06 Diversifying Revenue

09 The Next Chapter

10 Multiple Services, One MDK



Ever Evolving

Our Power is in Our People




MDK’s Mission and Values

Uncommon Paths to Success For more than 20 years, MDK has been a default services law firm primarily representing the mortgage servicing arms of large banks. Over time, we have diversified into a professional services firm, helping clients solve a myriad of legal problems in uncommon ways as a true partner. This document shares the MDK story to date and lays a path for our future. Telling our story well will help us affirm a new, clearer mission that will serve as our north star. We will have authentic values that will shape our community and a vision of the impact that we will have on the world over time. I hope you enjoy.

Ted Manley CEO


Our Journey MDK was born on March 7th, 2002. Brian Deas and I started in a charming old factory that had been converted into offices, perfect for a young law firm looking to make a name for ourselves—while having a little fun along the way. Early in our existence, we recognized that knowledge of title is essential to the effective functioning of a default services law firm. The problem was we didn't have a title background. Through a case that we worked on, a conversation started in which Ed Kochalski agreed to join our law firm and bring Allodial Title with him. Ed had a wealth of knowledge and more importantly was patient, funny, and kind. It was the beginning of a wonderful partnership.


The Early Days

Launching with only one client, it became clear that we needed more to support our fledgling firm. During this period, we made many trips and had countless meetings to show potential clients all that we had to offer. Not only were we able to share our offerings with potential clients, but we were also able to listen. We learned through many conversations that the experience that clients had with default law firms was not very positive. Chief among the complaints were poor communication, a lack of patient listening, condescension, and a lack of transparency. These seemed like relatively easy

objections to overcome. And overcome them we did. We worked hard to not only meet but far exceed our clients’ expectations. We have always strived to be the best. To us, this means being well prepared, well researched, and presenting quality legal work. The feedback we received was that we were responsive, efficient, and we cared about the impact of our work both in the courts and with our clients. To date, we continue to define ourselves and pursue excellence by staying ahead of the curve on legal matters, investigating legal trends and creating technology to advance our brand and set us apart.



Technology That Sets Us Apart

We believe that quality and efficiency are not mutually exclusive. Early in our development, one of our competitors who had lost some business to our firm wrote a letter to clients saying “I can do it right or I can do it fast. Pick one.” I thought this was an excellent opportunity to refute that notion. Clearly our biggest deliverable to our clients is to stem the loss that is created from nonperforming loans. Speed matters. At the same time, we are dealing with

human beings living in a home. This requires us to consider the impact on people when exercising our client’s rights in court. We handle this very sensitive work in a respectful and compassionate manner, never forgetting that individual human beings are impacted by this change in their lives. We are also dealing with titles to real estate. And we are prosecuting actions in courts with real live judges and attorneys on the other side.


All of this meant we needed to set up a system where we were able to provide high quality legal services at an efficient pace. We understood that we needed a better technology product than the off-the-shelf software that we had been using. After considering a number of options, we brought Ed Rudd on board. With his wealth of experience in IT with large Fortune 500 companies, Brian and Ed spent a lot of time together and at the end of 2009, we rolled out Casee, our proprietary case management software. This was the beginning of a long tradition of utilizing technology to support client expectations. Another example of this is the MDK Client CoLab, a client portal and reporting application that enables clients to see everything related to our management of their portfolio. The system provides an added layer of transparency to our relationship and allows MDK to provide clients with on-demand, automated, custom-designed reports tailored to the needs of their organization. Finally, CoLab addresses one of the most inefficient aspects of managing a high volume of files – completing executed and notarized documents for every case via DocuSign® integration.


Organic Growth Another way we focused on our ability to meet our clients’ needs was through regional expansion. We were confident that Casee would be instrumental in responding to audit requests and in having compliance requirements built into the system. This gave us an opportunity to expand to Kentucky, Indiana and Illinois as well as open our bankruptcy practice. It is a testament to the great work that everyone does at MDK that we were able to go into the largest legal markets in the country and quickly ascend in volume and size.

came to MDK. A firm that had been practicing in New Jersey and Pennsylvania had fallen on hard times and needed to close its doors. Through relationships that we had, this turned out to be an opportunity to open a Pennsylvania office and assume the practice. Now that we were in 5 states we needed to articulate a coherent regional offering. All our states were judicial, complex and challenging, but we managed all of them out of our Columbus HQ, providing the same degree of performance that we could when we were even smaller.

At just about the time that the Chicago office was stabilized, an opportunity

Yes, we thrive on difficulty!


Diversifying Revenue In addition to thriving on difficulty, one of MDK’s defining characteristics is its ability to adapt to change. Typically, law firms are engaged for routine services, but we always have been looking for new ways to engage our clients. Diversifying revenue streams into industries like timeshare, which we started in Florida but has grown to include California, Hawaii and South Carolina, allowed us the opportunity to blend technology, services and processes to move fast and serve our clients in uncommon ways. In 2020, in response to the pandemic, we started our staff augmentation service

at the request of a client who needed the immediate support of a skilled workforce. Following that, our residential mortgage practice grew to join our timeshare practice in Florida. Now we’re so much more than a default and foreclosure law firm. We’ve evolved into a comprehensive legal and professional services provider leaning into creativity to solve problems in ways that generate true value.



We Are Ever Evolving

The COVID-19 pandemic gave us an opportunity to pause and look inward to determine who we are. The ability to be of use to our clients and serve a broader base facilitated a brand refresh and a new way of working. We developed an agile team-based structure to align our resources to improve client service and enhance work life for Team MDK. Agile methodology has been adopted by many professional service industries to organize talent in streamlined and nimble ways. At MDK, our agile process allows multiple legal pods to provide a consistent and compliant legal product to our clients with standard operating procedures across the pods.


Why MDK MDK has traditionally been viewed by some as a foreclosure firm. But we know we are so much more.

Our clients’ success is how we define our own. And we help them get there through creative, 360° solutions paired seamlessly with proprietary technology, leading us to provide maximum value and a genuine partnership. This led us to a shift in our brand identity, evolving our association with technology and innovation. However, there is more distance to travel. The challenge is one of scope. The brand must tell the world that we provide high-quality commodity legal services using technology and a skilled

team. The addition of new practice groups, perhaps through acquisition, is a time-honored way of expanding our service offerings. In making decisions about expansion, we should play to our strengths in two ways: 1. focus on litigation and the considerable work that has been done in connecting with courts and agencies throughout our geographic footprint and 2. looking for opportunities from our existing clients, who are large consumers of legal services and for whom we are already a known entity.


The Next Chapter MDK is an innovative, tech-focused, progressively managed legal firm where people are excited to learn and grow. We will continue to optimize, grow and explore every aspect of our business.




Optimizing means continuing to refine our processes. We strive for better results with the most efficient team and technology around.

To grow, we remove boundaries and distribute autonomy and control throughout our organization. Our agile process creates small law firms supported by the resources of a large firm, creating a greater connection to and among those working in specific jurisdictions and the legal service being provided.

Explore begins with an attitude of curiosity and an open mind. We are inspired by new industries and look across the business landscape to understand how MDK can bring uncommon results to our clients to solve their uncommon problems via our broad skillsets.



Multiple Services. One MDK.

Today and into the future, our offering combines multiple services – legal guidance and representation, business analytics, development and application of proprietary technologies, reputation protection, and assistance with short- and long-term staffing. Our service goes beyond the present and immediate future; we anticipate potential issues and make sure to construct solutions to avoid them, which is why we’re known as a partner clients can turn to, regardless of the type or extent of the problem. There are many examples of clients who, when they’ve hit a roadblock and didn’t know where to turn- even if it wasn’t directly related to the law- called us. That’s a true partnership built on trust. And this is the type of partner we will continue to be for our clients, now and into the future.


MDK has been fortunate to undergo a transformative journey over its two decades of existence. During this time, we bid farewell to two of our founding leaders, Ed and Brian, who passed the torch to the next generation of trailblazers. Under the guidance of a seasoned executive team, MDK is forging an inspiring vision and charting an exciting course for the next two decades. Their role? Taking the firm on new paths and continuing to grow other strong leaders. We believe in fostering a culture that nurtures brilliance and innovation. Our success is driven by the exceptional talent we bring on board, embodying the essence of our aspirations for continuous improvement. We are proud to support the unique perspectives and the uncommon paths to success Team MDK embarks upon, because with inclusive culture comes limitless possibilities.

Our Power is in Our People


Our Mission We create uncommon paths to success for our clients and ourselves.


Our Values

Respect: We foster a psychologically safe work environment for everyone and assume good intentions in all interactions. Creativity: We seek mastery of our existing methods to discover original and useful ways to approach our work. Engagement: We bring commitment, focus and urgency to each working day because we are at our best when we are facing challenges that others avoid. Collaboration: We share knowledge, include all perspectives, provide supportive feedback, and build off each other’s skills as a team. Advancement: We are future-focused and optimistic about change, striving to find simpler, more efficient solutions to legal problems to further the goals of our clients and our people.

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