FOX40 wants to recognize the great contributions women have made to our nation and local communities. Remarkable Women is part of a nationwide Nexstar Media initiative to honor the influence that women have had on public policy, social progress and the quality of life.

Starting on International Women’s Day and continuing through the rest of March, FOX40 highlighted four local women who inspire, lead and forge the way for other women.

From the more than 100 local winners across the country, one woman will be selected and named Nexstar Media Group’s Woman of the Year.

Remarkable Women National Winner 2023

Nexstar’s 2023 Remarkable Woman of the Year, Mona Highline from Grand Junction, Colorado, was announced on April 3 during a lavish awards ceremony at the Loews Hollywood Hotel

Remarkable Women Sacramento-area Winner

This year’s Remarkable Women Winner is Amitis Pourarian. She arrived to the U.S. as a child and became an internationally renowned taekwondo competitor. She says martial arts has given her the confidence to overcome obstacles and achieve success in her career.

FOX40 held a celebration and announced the winner during a Remarkable Women special show aired live from Canon restaurant in East Sacramento, where all four candidates were present and were interviewed by host Sonseeahray Tonsall.

Remarkable Women Nominees 2023

Norma Remarkable Women

Norma DePauli

Norma DePauli’s faith drives her to serve the Stockton community through volunteer work.

Dr. Elysse Versher

Dr. Elysse Versher is a local Sacramento teacher and community educator who has taken teaching outside the classroom for the betterment of her students.

Amitis Pourarian

She arrived in the United States as a child, went on to a successful career in construction management and became internationally renowned as a taekwondo competitor. Today, she teaches martial arts and other skills through her fitness studio.

Joan Bennett

Joan Bennett spent many years of her life in service to her country in the United States Navy. Now Bennet is on a mission to share the joy she gets from fishing with the disabled community.

Remarkable Women of 2022

Janice Davis

From 30 kids and a few bags packed on her living room floor, Janice Davis’ passion to help hungry children has grown more than tenfold. Davis has nourished the local Blessings in a Backpack effort in Sacramento County for almost eight years.

Judith Lladoc

Balancing a husband, a house, kids, grandkids and days in the chemistry lab would be more than enough to fill out the plate of most people. But Judith Lladoc is not most people.

Marilyn Koenig

Sacramento’s Marilyn Koenig was blindsided by the loss of her son 45 years ago, and after finding her own way through it, has dedicated her life to helping other people see hope still exists.

Ethel Mae Thompson

Growing up, Ethel Mae Thompson found herself living on a block where waving at the folks across the street meant waving to civil rights icons in the making — and eventually joining them in their fight for equality.

Remarkable Women of 2021