One of Us: Victoria Proctor


As a sales advisor and outreach coordinator for Camellia at Deerwood, Victoria Proctor helps families decide whether the Jacksonville senior living community is a good fit for their desired lifestyle. She lives in Ponte Vedra Beach with her three sons, one of whom attends college in Gainesville.

What is a typical day like for you at Camellia at Deerwood?

My schedule varies every day. I spend a good amount of time on the phone each day, talking to seniors and their adult children about the many features and benefits of our active senior community. I give tours of the community, which often include a delicious lunch in our bistro. I am the outreach coordinator for Camellia at Deerwood, so I spend time each week visiting doctor’s offices, hospitals, rehabilitation centers and senior centers to get the word out about the availability of our independent living, assisted living and memory care apartments. I am also the line dancing instructor at Camellia, so you may find me teaching a class or dancing at our weekly Happy Hour!

How did you come to start working with seniors?

I am a real estate broker with a bachelor’s degree in public relations and marketing. When I moved to Ponte Vedra in 2006, the real estate market was really slowing down. I was fortunate enough to land a job in the senior living industry and found my passion. Working with seniors and their families to find the perfect community and apartment for their retirement lifestyle is so fun and rewarding. The best part of my job is once the resident moves to Camellia at Deerwood, I get to see them every day!

What sets Camellia apart from other senior communities?

Camellia at Deerwood’s focus is “5-Star Fun” – every day is a new adventure! Many people say that Camellia feels like a cruise ship that never leaves the dock. It resembles a concierge hotel with the 88 Keys lounge, first class library and game room with billiards, the Grand Pavilion Dining Room overlooking the resort-style heated saltwater pool, Primefit Gym with full-time instructor, and Palm Spa. It’s really about the people: We have an awesome staff who are focused on providing great service to our residents. The four-story community consists of 189 apartments, including a variety of studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments with full kitchens. Centrally located off Baymeadows and I-295 East, Camellia at Deerwood is a rental community, so no large buy in is required.

What are the benefits of living in a senior community like Camellia at Deerwood?

There are so many peripheral advantages like security, transportation, not having to cook and or mow the lawn. But I think the significant advantages are that residents have so many opportunities to remain engaged in life, relationships and new experiences. Our residents are able to go to on a variety of fun excursions each week to places like the Jacksonville Symphony, St. Augustine or Amelia Island sightseeing tours, or the Jacksonville Zoo just to name a few. Getting out and about in one of our passenger buses or our Cadillac is a great advantage for those residents who are no longer driving or would rather not drive, even if it is just to a doctor appointment, the grocery store or the bank.

What sort of questions should people ask when considering different senior living options?

It really depends on the reason for the move; I try to focus on the individual’s need.

Talk to the staff and current residents: Are they happy and socializing with other residents?

Is the staff friendly and paying attention to your questions? Does the meal plan, transportation schedule and social activities meet your needs and desires? Is the community clean and well kept? What are the care levels that are available?

What brought you to Ponte Vedra?

A job transfer brought my family to this part of the country. I am a true beach girl originally from Southern California. I’ve lived in several amazing places, including Hermosa Beach, California; Maui, Hawaii; Scottsdale, Arizona; and Salt Lake City, Utah. I spent many years land locked and was ready to return to the coast, any coast. The opportunity to move to the Jacksonville area came up and I jumped at the chance to get back to the beach. I feel very blessed to have found this slice of paradise called Ponte Vedra Beach!

How do you enjoy spending your free time?

I love going to the beach and being near the water. I enjoy spending time with friends and family. One of the nice things about living here in Florida is the proximity to so many close, fun vacations spots, so I like to plan short getaways. I also love to cruise, and hopping on a cruise ship is so easy here. I plan to do a lot more of that in the future.