Carter began winning professional titles in the early 1950s. In 1952, he won the U.S. All-Star Match-Game Championship (later known as the U.S. Open). He also won this tournament in 1954, 1956, and 1958. The following year, in 1953, he was asked to join the Anheuser-Busch-sponsored bowling team. Carter was important to team's success—included other future PBA Hall of Famers such as Ray Bluth, Pat Patterson, and Tom Hennessey.
Other big wins by Carter included six national titles between 1955 and 1962. In 1957, he won the World's Invitational
title. Carter won it again each year from 1959 to 1962. For his championships and other professional accomplishments, he was named bowler of the year by the Bowling Writers Association of America in 1953, 1954, 1957, 1958, 1960, and 1962. In 1959, he was named first team All-American by Bowling magazine. Carter won this honor again every year through 1963.