In the Society, John is known as Johann von Drachenfels. He is a Master of the Laurel and the Pelican, a Court Baron, a Companion of the Western Orders of the Leaf of Merit and Rose Leaf, and has a few other letters after his name.
Besides making tents, he teaches people how to make their own. He has held classes on the subject at the Twenty-five Year Celebration, The Thirty Year Celebration, a couple of Estrella Wars and numerous Kingdom and local Collegia. The handout he gave out at 30YC, somewhat updated, can be found in How to Make your Own Pavilion in this web site.
John started Dragonwing as a business in Rohnert Park, California, in 1987 and, shortly afterward, moved it to Salinas. He had to close the business for a few years to let a hurt shoulder heal, but reopened it in 1996 in Sacramento.
There might be people who ask "Wasn't there a John LaTorre in the hang-gliding industry for about twenty years? Used to be with Pacific Airwave (and other companies before that)? Did sail design for the Vision series?" Yup, same guy.