Namie launched a national campaign against workplace bullying in Benicia, California in 1998 with his wife Ruth, a clinical psychologist, after she was subject to harassment at work. Namie has an AB from Washington & Jefferson College in Washington, Pennsylvania, and an MA in Research Psychology from San Francisco State University. Namie taught psychology and management at US colleges for two decades. He taught the first university course in the US on workplace bullying. He was also a corporate manager for two regional hospital systems. He was the expert witness in the nation's first "bullying trial" in Indiana with the verdict upheld by the state Supreme Court.
In 2007 the Workplace Bullying Institute partnered with Zogby International to conduct the first representative study of all adult Americans on the topic of workplace bullying. The survey reported that 1/3 of American workers have experienced workplace bullying. The Namies lobbied for a "Healthy Workplace Bill" sponsored by Kelli Linville to give employees the right to sue if harmed by an abusive workplace.