tvOS Focus Problem

I have a UIView as a “dialog” with various buttons (similar to an Alertbox)… in tvOS I need to move the focus to one of the buttons when it is presented… I’m doing what every web article says, but something is not right

func present() {
    ... setup stuff

        viewToFocus(to:actions[0])  // this 'should' focus that button

    var myPreferredFocusedView: UIView?

    func viewToFocus(to : UIView) {
        myPreferredFocusedView = to
        print("TO :\(myPreferredFocusedView! )")
        print("CAN: \(myPreferredFocusedView!.canBecomeFocused)")
        print("IS : \(myPreferredFocusedView!.isFocused)")
///output from above routine 
///TO:<atvSOLITAIRE.UXAlertAction: 0x11871bcf0; ...
///CAN: true  // indicates the button CAN be focuses
///IS: false // but it is not

///the below routine NEVER gets called, and should via self.updateFocusIfNeeded()
    override var preferredFocusEnvironments: [UIFocusEnvironment] {
        print("Prefer: \(myPreferredFocusedView)")
        if myPreferredFocusedView != nil {
            return [myPreferredFocusedView!]
        } else {
            return super.preferredFocusEnvironments