Steven V. Carter was born in Carterville, Utah, on October 8, 1915. When he was fourteen years old, his family moved to Lamoni, Iowa. He graduated from Lamoni's Graceland College in 1934, the University of Iowa in 1937, and the University of Iowa's College of Law in 1939. He established a law practice in Leon, Iowa. In addition to his law practice, he was the county attorney for Decatur County (1940-1944) and was the city attorney for Leon (1946-1948). During World War II, Carter was a supply officer in the United States Navy. Elected as a Democrat to the 86th Congress, he served less than one year. Steven V. Carter died in office on November 4, 1959.