The influx of cash should cover the ship's upkeep bills for the next six months or so. By that time, Gibbs said, there's hope that a redevelopment deal will finally be close at hand.
"We aren't yet able to make an announcement about a final deal, but we're very hopeful 2014 is going to be the year for the SS United States," she said.
"At this point, the negotiations are confidential, but it's fair to say that the leading prospects are in New York," Gibbs continued. "But the Philadelphia region has not been ruled out."
In March, the conservancy expects to unveil an SS United States exhibition at the Independence Seaport Museum.
Artifacts from the ship - which was designed by Gibbs' grandfather, William Francis Gibbs, and launched in 1951 - will be on display, as will information about its connection to the region and its possible future.
"There are a lot of causes, a lot of challenges that the world is facing," Gibbs said. "Consequently, we're trying a number of approaches at keeping the ship in the public's eye."
British-born author and illustrator David Macaulay, who immigrated to the U.S. onboard the SS United States, has joined the conservancy's executive council and is penning a book about the vessel's creation, Gibbs said.
The conservancy bought the ocean liner in 2011 with a $5.8 million donation from H.F. "Gerry" Lenfest. (He is chairman and a co-owner of Interstate General Media, which owns the Daily News.)
Attracting interest from potential developers hasn't been difficult, but getting someone to fully commit to the project has been another story.
"We've been moving the ball down the field, but we haven't quite reached the end zone," Gibbs said. "The ship has unique engineering challenges, but it's structurally sound and ready for its next chapter."
On Twitter: @dgambacorta