New Haven Museum Founders Chat: Finding Your Rhythm

In partnership with the New Haven Museum


Imagine a creative life that unfolds in layers, fueled by your happiest memories of connection and belonging. Two-time business owner Alisa Bowens-Mercado has taken many a plunge into uncharted waters, making history while removing obstacles in the path for others. Hear how she is changing the game for craft brewing in Connecticut, and what "rhythm" has got to do with it. Bowens-Mercado will be joined in conversation by Randi McCray, co-founder of the Urban Collective, in a Q&A for aspiring entrepreneurs, followed by a brief ceremony to entrust artifacts from the two brands Alisa has built (so far!) into the collection of the New Haven Museum.

Alisa Bowens-Mercado

Founder of Rhythm Brewing Company, Alisa's House of Salsa

Alisa Bowens-Mercado is the first Black woman in the state to become a craft beer brewer. Her Rhythm Lager is inspired by her grandmothers, who both enjoyed drinking Miller Lite beers. The beer is currently only sold in and around the New Haven region, but it appears that among other brew masters, the beer is a tasty hit. The recipe is Bowens-Mercado’s own, and uses hops imported from South Africa, which connects to some other parts of her life.

Randi McCray

Founder, Urban Collective

Randi McCray is a dynamic highly skilled facilitator with ten years experience leading group conversations, training, and workshops with diverse groups. Randi’s experience includes; leading two (2) diversity and inclusion initiatives at Yale University, facilitating the racial equity initiative for a school readiness council, and facilitating dialogue on topics of race, power, privilege and social change. Randi’s facilitation style is supportive, engaging, and warm. Her presence has led to the requests from diverse groups who want to be inclusive and community centered in their agendas. Randi feels that her role as facilitator is to guide dialogue that allows for all voices to be present in the conversation. It is on this premise she believes that true community and inclusive agendas can lead to sustainable change. 

Sponsors & Partners