Umicore Building Products USA Hires Blueplate PR

To provide public relations services for the global company’s VMZINC® products and applications.

August 8, 2011 (Raleigh, NC) – Umicore Buildings Products USA, Inc., has hired Blueplate PR in Raleigh, NC, to provide public relations services for its Raleigh-based architectural products and services, specifically VMZINC, the architectural zinc manufactured by Umicore.

The VMZINC brand name represents a full range of titanium-zinc products in the form of sheets, coils and manufactured products and systems. Dan Nicely, director of market development for VMZINC and an associate member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), says he wants to “demystify” zinc as a building product and make a broader audience aware of its value and contribution to sustainable building design and construction.

“Zinc has been used on buildings in Europe for 200 years,” he said. “At least 80 percent of the roofs in Paris are covered in zinc, which can last 100 years or more. Yet Americans tend to think of zinc as exotic and expensive. We’re ready to make zinc a household word, and we believe Blueplate PR can help us do just that.”

Kim Weiss, principal of Blueplate PR and a former architecture journalist, first became aware of VMZINC® when Umicore Building Products USA donated the material for the roof of the new AIA North Carolina Center for Architecture & Design that is under construction in downtown Raleigh. Frank Harmon Architect PA, another Blueplate PR client, designed the building.

“The warm reddish-brown color of the zinc roof is going to be the crowing jewel of the building,” she said. “And it contributes to the building’s sustainability. Very little energy is used to produce zinc, and it is a low-maintenance, naturally occurring material that lasts longer than other metal roof choices. Any construction waste can be recycled through local scrap metal dealers and it is easily recycled at the end of its use. I agree that it is time more people — from architects and builders to homeowners – to realize what an excellent choice it is. I’m honored to be part of the mission.”

For more information on VMZINC, go to

For more information on Blueplate PR, visit

About Umicore Building Products USA, Inc:

Umicore is a world-leading producer of architectural zinc. For over 160 years, Umicore has been providing innovative solutions for building owners, architects and contractors. Umicore has offices and representatives all over the world. In the United States, Umicore Building Products USA, Inc., is based in Raleigh, NC. For additional information, visit

About Blueplate PR:

Blueplate PR is a boutique public relations agency located in downtown Raleigh that provides traditional and non-traditional media relations, Internet presence, and professional writing services for small businesses, individuals and non-profits. Owned and operated by award-winning journalist Kim Weiss, Blueplate PR is the only PR agency in the region with keen knowledge of the architectural professional and architecture-related businesses and organizations. For more information visit

Roster Update

I don’t often (in fact, I think I’ve never) posted anything on “blueplate pr: news & views” that wasn’t a press release generated for a client. However, the blueplate pr website — — is currently out of date (long story…having something to do with my website manager getting mugged in New Orleans), so I’m going to update the current roster here. Hopefully this will be reflected on the actual website very soon.

blueplate pr’s current clients include: 

Frank Harmon Architect PA, Raleigh, NC

Studio A Architecture, Inc., Charleston, SC

Triangle Modernist Houses, Durham, NC

Rick Ingersoll, “The Frugal Travel Guy,” Hilton Head, SC/Traverse City, MI

RHA Howell, Inc., Raleigh, NC

Author Cris Cohen, Cary, NC

Author T. Lyn Fletcher, Durham, NC

Photographer/Director Allen Weiss, Raleigh, NC

Artist Jason Craighead, Raleigh, NC

Raleigh Metro Magazine, Raleigh, NC

blueplate pr is a boutique public relations agency located in downtown Raleigh with a fee structure optimized for individuals, businesses and non-profit organizations with moderate marketing budgets.


Blueplate PR Donates Services For RHA Howell Fundraisers

Blue Plate Card.1
May 26, 2009 (RALEIGH, NC) — Blueplate PR in Raleigh has announced RHA Howell Care Centers as its 2009 pro bono client. Blueplate PR will work with RHA events coordinator Debbie Valentine on promoting community fundraisers.

For nearly 30 years, RHA Howell, North Carolina’s largest private, not-for-profit provider of residential-based services for developmentally disabled people, has operated almost entirely on Medicaid funding. That’s no longer enough. Public funding cannot keep pace with the cost of continued quality care and capital improvements at these centers, including the Gatewood Center, Greensboro Group Homes and Thomasville Group Homes.

So for the first time in its history, RHA Howell began launching a series of community fundraising events in 2007.

Currently, Kim Weiss of Blueplate PR is providing public relations services for The Epicurious Vino Challenge, a fundraiser to be held at the Hinnant Family Vineyards in Pine Level, NC, on May 30. Some of the state’s finest professional chefs will be competing to see who creates the best dish using a designated Hinnant wine as a key ingredient. US Food Services’ team of executive chefs will choose one winner. Participants, who get to sample all of the dishes as well as 18 Hinnant wines, will choose a People’s Choice winner. Live jazz, raffles and other activities are included. For more information and tickets, go to

About RHA Howell: RHA Howell has been helping people with disabilities and special needs, and their families, make choices to live more independently for more than 35 years. Integrity, high standards for quality, hard work are at the core of every RHA Howell disability assistance program.

About Blueplate PR: Owned and operated by award-winning journalist Kim Weiss, Blueplate PR is a small and cost-effective boutique public relations agency located in downtown Raleigh offers a fee structure optimized for modest PR budgets. This makes Blueplate PR the ideal solution for small firms, companies, business and individuals. For more information, visit