Victor "Vic" Frederick Snyder was born in Medford, Oregon, on September 27, 1947.
In 1965 Snyder entered college at Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. Two years later he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and spent a year in Vietnam. He returned to Willamette University and earned his bachelor's degree in chemistry in 1975 and his M.D. from the University of Oregon Health Sciences Center in Portland, Oregon, in 1979.
Snyder served his residency at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, which included working with refugees and rural populations overseas. He practiced general medicine in Little Rock before attending law school at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, where he received his law degree in 1988 and continued to practice medicine. In 1990 Snyder was elected to the Arkansas State Senate, an office he held until 1996 when he was elected to the United States House of Representatives. Snyder stepped down in 2011 and accepted a position with Arkansas Blue Cross in Little Rock.