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The Dorothy Everton Smythe Female Empowerment Award was named for the feminist leader Dorothy Everton Smythe, whom Leslie Knope describes as a "trailblazing feminist". She was the first woman in Pawnee to wear pants on a Sunday. She spent four years in jail for that. The Indiana Organization of Women chooses a woman each year to be honored with the award.

In the episode "Woman of the Year", Ron Swanson is chosen to receive the award. Upon hearing he's won, Ron mistakenly calls it the "Dorothy Everytime Smurf Girl Trophy for Excellence in Female Stuff", angering Leslie, who thought she should have won for her Camp Athena project, a camp for troubled girls. Elise Yarktin, the IOW Director, tells Leslie and Ron that he was chosen because "nobody cares when a woman wins".

A second time the awards are mentioned by Leslie on "Pie-Mary", where Elise meets Leslie at her home, with Leslie asking her if they're going to give her the award this time. By the end of the episode, Elise grants the award to Ben Wyatt after he stands out for equality in his pronunciation with Leslie, which makes Leslie bitter.

Funnily enough, all the known people to have been awarded with the Woman of the Year title and the award are men.

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