Some government agencies receive flack because of inefficiency, too much bureaucracy and incompetent employees, but the director of the parks department appreciates when the government is slow and unorganized. Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) is a libertarian who believes the government spends too much taxpayer money and interferes too much in citizen’s lives, so he likes when his department gets as little done as possible. While he hired many employees purposefully because they are unmotivated or inept, Leslie is an exception. Their opposite natures serve them well because Leslie is happy to do most of the work, and Ron keeps her from going overboard on projects.
Despite once claiming to be the birthplace of Julia Roberts and being the town of the Julia Roberts lawsuit instead, Pawnee, Indiana has little claim to fame and has problems with obesity, raccoons and government scandals. Leslie often makes the best of Pawnee’s faults because she loves the town she grew up in, and she is the Deputy Director of the parks department because she wants to provide the community with important, fulfilling services. Leslie is a motivated idealist who has a crush on Joe Biden, has been a member of the Indiana Organization of Women since she was nine and can sometimes be overzealous when working, but she is usually a very sweet individual who loves whipped cream and would do anything for her friends.