[Photo: Christie Goodwin]Billboard has named Katy Perry its Woman of the Year. The prolific hit-maker follows in the footsteps of past winners Beyonce, Fergie and Taylor Swift. The award will be presented at the Billboard Women in Music event set for Nov. 30 at Capitale in New York City.
Women have dominated the pop charts in the past few years to such a degree that the idea of a Woman of the Year sounds pretty retro. Perry, Beyonce, Fergie and Swift are among the hottest artists in pop music, period.
According to Billboard, "the award honors the achievements of a trailblazing female recording artist over the past 12 months, and acknowledges her overall success in the music business and her leadership in embracing the changing industry."
Perry has been a fixture on the Billboard charts since her breakthrough smash "I Kissed A Girl" debuted in May 2008. She holds the record for the most consecutive weeks (69) with at least one song in the top 10 on the Hot 100.
In August 2011, she tied Michael Jackson's record for the most #1 singles from one album. In March 2012, she entered the Hot 100 at #1 for the first time in her career with "Part Of Me." It was her seventh #1 hit.
Perry has sold 48 million digital tracks in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan. She has four of 30 best-selling digital hits of all time, which is more than any other artist. "Firework" is her biggest hit, with U.S. sales of 5,869,000 copies. It is followed by "California Gurls" (featuring Snoop Dogg, 5,374,000), "E.T." (featuring Kanye West, 5,361,000) and "Hot N Cold" (5,281,000).
Perry's two albums have sold a combined total of nearly 4 million copies in the U.S. Teenage Dream has sold 2,503,000 copies. Its predecessor, One Of The Boys, has sold 1,489,000.
This award makes up for a rare chart disappointment that Perry experienced last month when "Wide Awake" became her first single to peak at #2. (Perry has been so hot in the past few years that a #2 single is a "disappointment.")
Perry was also shut out of the major categories at the recent VMA Awards. "Wide Awake" was nominated for Music Video of the Year (a category that Perry won the year before with "Firework"), but the video had to settle for just one award for Best Art Direction. Perry also has yet to win a Grammy Award, despite eight nominations (including Album of the Year for Teenage Dream and Record of the Year for "Firework").