Billboard has shown a great deal of love to Taylor Swift by honoring her as its latest Woman of the Year.

Swift, 21, has been recognized before by this prestigious music industry trade, receiving titles for Top Country Artist, Top Country Album and Top Billboard 200 Artist. But this new recognition makes her the youngest artist ever to earn the honor.

Announcing the decision, Billboard Editorial Director Bill Werde noted, “Taylor has shown the power of good songwriting with music that has transcended genres, and we’re thrilled to recognize all of her successes over the past year by honoring her with the Billboard Woman of the Year Award.”

He continued, “At the young age of 21, Taylor has already made a major impact on music and has been an incredible role model for aspiring singers-songwriters and young women everywhere. I look forward to watching her career continue to flourish in the years to come.”

It’s certainly been an amazing year for Swift, who has released a series of hit singles, a sold-out tour and a new fragrance in 2011 — and was recently named in Forbes’ latest list of the highest-paid women in entertainment. With a new album scheduled for 2012, it doesn’t look like she’ll be slowing down anytime soon.

[Taste of Country]