Gullvåg was a member of Nøtterøy municipality council from 1979 to 1987 and 2003 to 2007.
The son of Eigil Gullvåg, long-time editor of the newspaper Arbeider-Avisa, Steinar Gullvåg originally worked as a journalist, starting in Arbeider-Avisa. He took over as editor-in-chief in Hardanger Folkeblad 1973–1977 and in Vestfold Arbeiderblad 1977–1983. From 1994 to 2005 he was information director of the Directorate of Public Roads.
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