We are pleased to share Citi has met and exceeded our firm-wide, aspirational diversity representation goals for 2018-2021. Globally, we increased representation at the Assistant Vice President to Managing Director levels for women to 40.6% (up from 37% in 2018) and in the U.S. we increased Black representation for those same levels to 8.1% (up from 6% in 2018). Additionally, when we include all our Black colleagues in the U.S., including those who self-identify as two or more races at the same levels, Black representation increased to 9.1%.
Citi's commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is at the core of who we are as a firm, and we believe that transparency and accountability are key to our success. When we started on this journey in 2018, we were candid about our talent representation gaps among Black and women colleagues across the firm, and we did something about it. Citi was the first and only major bank to publicly share our goals, and our pay equity gaps, and then we held ourselves accountable for creating foundational change.
I am incredibly proud of the work our teams across the company did to make this happen. We embedded these goals in our business strategy and executive scorecards to track our progress; we evolved our recruiting initiatives, hiring practices and sourcing of internal talent to expand our pool of candidates; we empowered our employee networks and people managers to strengthen our talent pipelines; and we enhanced our benefits to attract and retain more diverse talent.
Meeting these goals certainly came with challenges along the way, and it's been inspiring to hear stories from across the globe of how our teams made it happen. Some examples include: our partnership with NPower to attract non-traditional candidates, resulting in more than 125 hires; EMEA's Momentum Sponsorship Program, which focused on developing senior women talent; and the Independent Compliance Risk Management team working with high-potential colleagues to develop their skills through mentoring and networking.
We will continue to deepen our DEI commitments to support our colleagues and communities – including using diverse slates for recruiting, advancing pay equity, making progress on key commitments like our $1 billion-plus Action for Racial Equity initiative, and more.
While we've achieved these aspirational representation goals, we recognize there is more work to be done. We will set new goals, expanding to new markets and other underrepresented groups. You'll hear more on these goals later this year.
DEI is foundational to the culture and growth of our business; it's our competitive advantage. On behalf of Citi's Executive Management Team, I'm excited about the progress we've made and look forward to continuing this work in the future.