Historic Greek Revival house in Medina sees new purpose as business office
Gloria Brent and Mike Snyder spearhead several Medina businesses
MEDINA – A 170-year-old home on Pearl Street is seeing new life as the office of MDS Consultants.
MDS was formed in 2008 by Gloria Brent, who with her husband Mike Snyder has purchased the house, which they are in the process of upgrading and highlighting many of its historic features.
Brent’s journey to Medina is a tale of success. Born and raised in Bath, she studied nursing at Corning Community College. She was working as a nursing supervisor at a nursing home in Rochester, where she saw a job posted for an MDS coordinator. (The Minimum Data Set is a mandated process for residents in Medicare and Medicaid certified nursing homes.)
“I knew nothing about it, but I applied kind of out of curiosity,” Brent said. “They hired me and paid someone to train me. I realized there was no one I could turn to for information when I needed it, and I knew then there was a need for this service.”
In wondering how to get her business started, her husband asked her why she didn’t just pick up the telephone book and start calling every nursing home in the area. She sat at her kitchen table, and her business was born.
“When I got to ‘B,’ Batavia was the first name I saw and I called Batavia Nursing Home,” Brent said.
They were interested, and she was on her way. From 2008 to 2012, she worked alone from home, but the demand for her service was so great, she started hiring. Today, MDS Consultants is the largest company in the nation dedicated to helping nursing homes become and stay compliant with regulations for Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement. She employs 55 people throughout seven states.
Brent is the author of three books and has developed software to better capture patient care measures in skilled nursing facilities.
Both Brent, a licensed land surveyor, and Snyder have children by previous marriages, and after meeting through mutual friends, they married and moved to Medina, where he lived. They purchased the former home of Dr. Abassey on Culvert Road, and then began to pursue other business interests in the Medina area.
Two years ago, they purchased the building on East Center Street, which was home to Canal Country Artisans and then Filomena’s Favorites. It is now a very successful Modern Mercantile. In addition to purchased rental properties, last year they bought Main Street Liquor Store.
Five years ago the couple bought an c.1853 Greek Revival home at 105 Pearl St., which they are restoring as an office for both of them. The home is unique in its construction, as the walls are lath plank, or 1 x 6-inch boards laid flat and stacked on top of each other. They uncovered a lath ceiling in the room Brent will use for her office, and chose to frame around it and leave it exposed. In the room which become Snyder’s office, he is planning to install a tin ceiling.
“We immediately saw the value in the building,” Brent said.
Last week, Brent and Synder received a visit from a man who used to live in the house.
Andy Jamele of Kuckville lived there in the 1950s and 1960s with his siblings and parents Pasquale and Maude Jamele. He pointed out there were 10 rooms upstairs, which his parents rented out. He recalled when he and his brother Carl remodeled the east side of the house and moved his father from the west side of the house into those rooms. What was their living room will now be a conference room.
Jamele also pointed out where there used to be bathrooms, and windows which used to extend to the floor. He said there used to be quite a bit of land and a barn on the south side of the house, which sits on the corner of Pearl and Proctor Place.
His visit brought back a lot of memories, Jamele said. He is thrilled to see the home being maintained and put to good use.
Brent and Snyder didn’t say what might have in mind next.
“I never dreamed we would do what we’ve done,” Snyder said.
They work together to manage their properties, Brent said.
“We are enjoying the journey,” she said. “It’s all about the journey.”